DT 28570 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28570 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28570 (Hints)

Big Dave’s Saturday Crossword Club

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As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a    Security wanting all to clear off (10)
An anagram (off) of ALL TO CLEAR

10a    Compass moved quickly, finally pointing east (5)
A verb meaning moved quickly followed by the final letter of [pointin]G and E(ast)

12a    Colourful creature, something in the garden to be eaten by cat? (8)
Something found in a garden which is particularly useful at this time of the tear (1,4) inside the type of animal of which a cat is an example (indicated by the question mark)

15a    Bans partner’s parents after divorce? (7)
Start with one’s partners parents and change to first part to sort of indicate that they are divorced

17a    Expressionless corpse with power to drive medium away (7)
Start with a corpse (4,3) and insert P(ower) instead of M(edium)

21a    Get into shape before couple’s announcement (7)
A prefix meaning before followed by what sounds like (announcement) a couple

24a    One hanging on where falling soldier might be found (8)
Split as (4,4) this could be where a soldier who jumps out of an aircraft might be found

30a    Weaknesses shown by supporters of Cassius? (4,2,4)
I liked this one – it’s got nothing to do with Ancient Rome and everything to do with the birth name of a former World Heavyweight Boxing Champion and the “supporters” on which he stood


1d    Swimmer in quartet among 18 from the south (4)
The reversal (from the south in a down clue) of the first four letters (quartet) of the answer to 18 Down

4d    Timelessly seductive woman is queen (7)
Drop both T(ime)s from a seductive woman to get a female ruler (queen)


5d    Work in ‘Bill & Ted’ took over (7)
The two-letter musical work sandwiched between a bill or poster and TED from the clue

9d    Look up Eastern wine — it enhances the memory (8)
The reversal (up in a down clue) of a quick look is followed by a wine from an Eastern country

14d    Story put out, very heartless and confused (5-5)
An anagram (out) of STORY PUT followed by V[er]Y without its inner letters (heartless)

18d    Realistic after rehearsal, shortened a line (9)
Start with a rehearsal, drop its final letter (shortened) and add the A from the clue and L(ine)

21d    Swapping RE, senior pupil gets 10/10? (7)
Start with a senior pupil and swap the RE round

23d    Professional leaving right and left boot out (5)
Start with a professional, drop (leaving) the R(igh)T and add L(eft)

26d    Partner runs from part of tennis match (4)
Drop the R(uns) from a phase of play that may happen during a game in a tennis match

The Crossword Club is now open.

I’m off to the Village Café and Market – back around lunchtime.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully – they are not subject to debate or discussion. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted. In all cases the administrator’s decision is final.

The Quick Crossword pun: letters+spray=let us pray

57 comments on “DT 28570 (Hints)

  1. 12a defeated me, I did not realise that the? referred to just the last word rather than the whole clue, and I did not see where the second letter came from, should it not be indicated in the wordplay? Also the definition is not very specific.
    Also put the senior pupil rather than the answer in 21d, utter stupidity on my part.
    Apart from that very enjoyable Saturday challenge, just a shame about 12a as I needed an internet cheat to complete.
    Hope I have not transgressed the rules.
    Thanks BD and Saturday Mr Ron.

    1. The rules of completion according to Miffypops

      Rule 1. There are no rules

      Rule 2. If in doubt. See rule one

      There is much satisfaction gained upon completion of a cryptic crossword puzzle whatever your level of competence. Grizzled old campaigners will need little or no help due to their expertise having been gained over many years. Newcomers may be baffled by the simplest of clues.

      A completed grid is a completed grid and I don’t much care howsoever anybody gets there. The more experienced you are the less help you should need.

      Beginners should feel free to use to anything and everything to achieve completion, dictionaries, encyclopaedia, an atlas, books of crossword lists, and of course the internet. I have spent a couple of hours looking with amazement at just how much help is out there on the World Wide Web including this very blog itself.

      Scribble away in the newspaper margins or use a notepad. Make little circles of anagram fodder. Write a succession of dashes, put in your checkers and play with the clues to your hearts content

      Regard these aids as crutches, helping you along. With time and experience and a good memory it should be possible to throw these crutches away little by little as one becomes more proficient. For example, once someone learns to recognise how anagrams work i.e. Indicator, fodder and definition they really ought to stop using the anagram solver and work them out for themselves. One by one the aids should fall away until you sit there pencil-less with a quickly self-completed puzzle and think “Now what shall I do” as you reach for the toughie and contemplate volunteering to review puzzles for Big Dave.

      Happy solving to you all however you do it.

      1. If you have an iPad, check out Crossword Solver by Havos, and forget Roget, Chambers, Britannica, and the rest. I’m using this software less and less with practice. I originally used Crossword Maestro for Windows, which solves virtually everything, but it removes the fear factor for beginners, and explains the solutions. Doesn’t seem to work on Windows 10.
        I aspire to R+W, whereby you don’t need to look at the grid at all!

      2. Well said and all true, although I suspect that Hoofit may have been referring to the Big Red Box rules about discussing prize puzzles.

        For anybody curious about such things, there will be a post published on Tuesday with data about blog readers’ use of solving aids, and their solving times, ratings, etc., all gleaned from a survey on DT 28566. That survey will remain open until midnight on Monday. It’s available in the preamble to my blog from last Tuesday.

      3. I find the easiest way to solve anagrams is to jumble the letters you need to work with so you make a nonsense word to start with. Sometimes the anagram answer will then jump out at you, but if not you at least look at the letters differently. If I write the letters as presented by the setter I get fixed in my mind and I cannot see beyond that. Not sure if I am explaining this very clearly, but this is what works best for me and might help others to get to love anagrams.

  2. I did the same with 21d which delayed completion. I fired up my 16yr old Crossword Maestro for old times sake, after my solve, and it got everything except 21d in a few minutes, even 30a. Salute to W.T-P.
    Not keen on the Lego clues, but I suppose they are necessary.
    Had to smile at 15a. Never heard it used like this.
    2½* / 2½ *

  3. Fairly gentle solve for a Saturday morning – no new words and very fair clues. ** for difficulty and **** for enjoyment today. I had a bit of a problem with 5d as I kept trying to use the more common abbreviation for bill. Favourite 30a although, as a fan of the man, it was quickly solved. Thanks to BD and Mr Ron.

  4. This was processed in 2* time today. Nothing to startle the horses.

    I am finding that the Saturday puzzles are rarely challenging me. Is there any truth in the rumour, do you think, that they want people to complete them and submit for a prize, thereby garnering a marketable data-base of DT readers “intelligent” (Ha!) enough to solve a cryptic?

    Many thanks to the setter and BD.

    1. I have always suspected that MalcolmR but IMO they probably don’t even much care about level of intelligence. I also agree with you HYD re recent increased trickiness on Saturday.

  5. Something of a walk in the park completed at a gallop (how about that for mixing metaphors!) – 1.5/2.5.

    Favourite – a toss-up between 30a and 4d.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  6. 9d caused me a bit of a headache and I had to use the Internet to get it , but I really enjoyed this one. A cut above the normal Saturday fare.

    The boss has gone to Lakeside with our eldest and her friend, god knows what she finds appealing about that place – thankfully I can settle down for ManU v Spurs and then Northampton v Wasps – it’a a tough life!

  7. Unless I’ve written down the date incorrectly (in which case apologies) today is 2Kiwis’ Golden Wedding Anniversary – many congratulations to them.

    1. Your memory system is working perfectly Gazza.
      28th October 1967 was the day we tied the knot.
      We are still in Delhi at present but will be going to Agra and the Taj Hamal in a couple of days.
      Thanks so much for your kind wishes.
      Carol and Colin.

  8. 2.5* /4* for this very enjoyable and relatively straightforward Saturday puzzle. 12a was my last in and favourite of the day, although 4d and 24a made it on to the podium.

    Many thanks to the setter and BD.

  9. 2.5* / 3.5*. As YS says this was enjoyable and relatively straightforward. 9d was my last one in and 30a was my favourite with 12a runner-up.

    Is the answer to 4d really a synonym for queen?

    Many thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.

  10. After I completed this I could not understand why it took me such a long time to do so. Usually when I struggle anagrams come to my rescue but today I even struggled with some of these. Anyway all is well that ends well. I do not think that queen and ******* are interchangeable. The colourful creature is a personal favourite and is my top clue too.

  11. It must be one of those ‘just me’ days – I thought some of this was tricky although now I can’t see why.
    12a was one of my last answers and so was 9d.
    I’ve never heard of 30a and anyway I was thinking of the wrong Cassius.
    21d also took ages – no excuses there.
    I liked 24a and 20d. My favourite in spite of the rather macabre surface reading was 17a.
    Thanks to Mr Ron and to BD.
    I don’t stand a hope in hell with the NTSPP so off to play in the greenhouse.

        1. Yes – I do always remember that that’s what you’ve said before – doesn’t seem to be working today – I’ve got seven answers which isn’t really enough to get me going.

          1. No – nor me. I think CS’s point is that if you ignore all that and just concentrate on reading the clues you will get a few answers (in my case it was very few answers) and, with a bit of luck, all will become clear.

  12. Did seem quite easy for me too. I struggled a bit with 12a too but BD explained why the answer I had bunged in worked. I also struggled with the 14d anagram and missed the backwards part of 6a and that was last in for me. Had a pleasant evening with the S&B in York and am now at the Saturday do struggling with some of the puzzles available there.

  13. I did enjoy this, though I agree that it was less challenging than the Saturday puzzles have been of late. 27A, 30A and 20D all earned ticks from me. thanks to the Saturday setter and BD for the blog.

    I don’t know whether they have access to the site during their travels, but congrats to the 2Kiwis on their Golden Anniversary.

  14. Argh! Don’t you just love it when your broadband signal drops out when you’re trying to send your comments?
    So for the second time…
    I found today’s puzzle somewhat trickier than usual. I eventually completed and then as usual couldn’t work out quite what slowed me down. Favourites were 14d and 30a, and overall 2.5/3*.
    Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints.
    MP? I agree wholeheartedly!

    1. You too? Mine always seems to fail right after I type in my comments, and then I have to reconnect and do over 😕

  15. Yes. An easier Sat puzzle than recently. However it still took me into *** difficulty time. I was enjoying it until 20d and 24a. My last ones in. I’m pretty certain they are correct but don’t really get them especially 20d.

  16. I have no idea why this took me so long. 6a was the last one in. It was my first answer, but I didn’t fill it in as I couldn’t work it out, until the penny dropped. 24a made me smile when I eventually got it, as did 30a. Thank you setter, and thanks too BD.

  17. I thought this was the best Saturday puzzle for several weeks, producing a lot of smiles and a laugh-out-loud moment from 30a. I had the same thought as RD regarding 4d=queen, but BD’s illustration answers that question. Thanks to Mister Ron for the fun and to BD for the hints and tips, especially the video for 21d.

  18. I think my brain is turning to mush! I found some of this to be really, really tough. I needed far too much help from electronics. I could not understand 28a for ages, but now it seems so obvious.
    Lots of good stuff here, loved 30a, 12a and 14d in particular, especially as they got me going.
    Thanks to the Saturday setter for a good start to the day, which is forecast to have flood rains later, and to BD.
    I hope all are having a bonza time and congrats to the 2Kiwis, what an achievement!

    1. Thank goodness for the crosswords on a very wet weekend here in South Florida. Just glad this storm looks to be skipping by us. I know you love the heat but I really enjoyed the few cooler days last week. Our aging cat was thrilled to bask in the sun by an open window, no such treat for him today.

  19. I found this one fairly straightforward but I was in a better state of mind today. I was also going to get on with the Times puzzles this afternoon, but spotted Eric Clapton on Sky Arts and opted to play the rhythm guitar along with it and that gave me the impetus to crank up the electric and then I was just generally noisy in the neighbourhood.

    Thanks to BD and setter **/****

  20. Then I realised I didn’t even have the Times puzzles as I hadn’t been to collect the paper. Oh the joys of living life on the edge…

  21. I agree with Mr Kitty. I really enjoyed today’s puzzle.This is my type of compiler! I even managed to complete it whilst watching our young England team…well done boys! Thanks to all the usual suspects. Have a great weekend all.

  22. Big Dave’s survey shows too many typical users lurking in the shrubbery, so I felt I should make an effort! Like some others, I found this much easier than some of the previous weeks’ offerings and more enjoyable too. LOL at 24a and 30a.
    Congrats to the 2 Kiwis.

  23. Enjoyed this challenge over a leisurely breakfast and then a beautiful sunny day for an amble along the Thames near Teddington lock following an excellent lunch at newish ‘Liz’ restaurant. Puzzle was fun with my special mentions going to 15a, 4d and 20d. I complicated matters for myself by failing to reverse RE in 21d.

      1. Hope BL perhaps your need might be satisfied one of these days and that ‘Liz’ is there for you. In fact Teddington has a huge number of restaurants these days so there is plenty of competition. 🍽🍷☕️

  24. Started over breakfast and finished over lunch, very enjoyable and satisfying as I needed no electronic help except Big Dave’s hints for 12a – that was my first in, ********, and wrong so that did not get me off to a good start. Also for 21a where I could not think of a word that sounded like couple for the life of me, other than duo. Luckily Mr BL solved that for me. So completed and loved it.

  25. Top end of 1* and 3.5* for enjoyment. 9d was my last in, and my favourite. Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints. Now – back to Friday’s Toughie. At this rate it will last me until Wednesday!

  26. An unusually easy Saturday puzzle – a most definite * for difficulty here. As most of my solving time was taken up today, though, with a kids’ Halloween party, I was most grateful.

  27. The wife and I are getting better at these after many months. After an hour we had a quick peek, ahem, for help with our remaining blanks of 4d and 9d. Slow for many but every completed grid we celebrate as a triumph still.

  28. Thanks to the setter and to Big Dave for the hints. A very enjoyable puzzle, with some great clueing, especially in the bottom half. I found a lot of it very original and refreshing. Not too tricky. Favourite was 30a, did think of Ancient Rome at first. Was 2 * / 4 * for me.

  29. Completed this one in the wee sma’ hours (duly adjusted) after sleep abandoned me and for good measure followed it up with Sunday’s. Both straightforward and fun.
    Not going to say any more.

  30. I found this quite difficult and amazed by those who found it ‘easy’….
    Top left was the worst area, probably because I neglected to work on the 1a anagram, so thanks to BD for the odd hint – when usually I don’t need them. Last week was also an exception.
    Like BD I went for the correct Cassius so that was the best clue for me? 14d was a goody also.
    May be having the grandchildren last week addled the brain….!

  31. No time on Saturday so completed it this morning. At first glance I thought this was going to be a tough one, but once tuned in, the answers came quite readily. **/****. I liked 28a but 30 was my first place.

  32. Like RayS on first read through I thought this was going to be tough, but once I found the anagrams and the lurker I managed to complete it over lunch. 13a had me stumped until I realised I had the wrong plot in mind, and then 9d dropped into place. Talking of plots, I’m now off to work in
    mine whilst the Cornish sun continues to shine. 12a and 30a were favourites.

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