DT 28701 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28701 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28701 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club (hosted by Gazza)

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Big Dave is suffering from hard disk problems currently so any blame for the inadequacies of today’s hints should be directed at me. 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. Although I’ve tried to select the clues I expect to cause the most difficulty, feel free to ask for help on any others – but please read (and obey) the instructions in red at the end of this post.

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.

Across Clues

1a Steal and finish up here? (4)
Two meanings – an informal verb to steal and another informal word for where a thief may end up.

3a Ring for service in Jewish bakery? (5)
Cryptic definition of a ring-shaped “holy” foodstuff that you may be served in a Jewish bakery. This doesn’t work terribly well for me.

11a Column from this writer, penetrating wall-to-wall coverage? (8)
Insert the subjective pronoun identifying ‘this writer’ into what’s used to give a smooth surface to internal walls. The answer is a rectangular column, especially one projecting from a wall.

15a Right to head left, diverting more in shock (6)
Reverse (heading left, in an across clue) the usual 2-letter abbreviation for right and add an anagram (diverting) of MORE.

17a City with west-facing heath, setting for soap action? (8)
A delightful cryptic definition. Start with the name of an historic city in Somerset (where there’ll be gloom today following their trouncing by the mighty Exeter Chiefs in the Anglo-Welsh Cup Final yesterday) and then reverse (west-facing in an across clue) another word for a heath.

25a Food left in cooler (4)
Insert the abbreviation for left into a piece of apparatus used to cool the air.

Down Clues

1d Another thing — caps must be raised in place of entertainment (9)
An anagram (another) of THING followed by the reversal of a verb meaning caps or outdoes.

2d Guided a jerk over castle (7)
Join together a verb meaning guided or conducted, A and a facial jerk then reverse (over) the lot.

4d Toff, defenceless clerk, becomes more kind (7)
A word for a toff followed by the inner letters (i.e. defenceless or without outer protection) of ‘clerk’.

6d Duck person doing spadework (9)
Double definition, the first a type of duck with a broad bill.

13d Film director‘s thumb on part of gun (9)
A verb to thumb (by the side of a road, say) followed by a word for the firing lever of a gun.

17d Checkout lines (7)
Cryptic definition of the black lines used to identify what you’ve purchased at the supermarket checkout.

20d Cast finished, as one might say (5)
We need a homophone of a word meaning finished or over. ‘Cast’ here is a verb in the past tense.

The Crossword Club is now open.

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: TERRY + TORY + ALL = TERRITORIAL


41 comments on “DT 28701 (Hints)

  1. Another mild Saturday Prize, but still quite enjoyable. Unlike the reviewer, I thought 3a across was a fine clue. 2* / 3*

  2. I thought this was fairly gentle for a Prize puzzle but no less enjoyable. I particularly enjoyed 6 and 17d, and overall this was 2* /3* for me.

    Thanks very much to our setter and Gazza. Spring seems to have been delayed yet again as we have a dusting of snow on the hills and the temperature is struggling to get above 4C.

  3. Just the ticket for a relaxed Bank Holiday Saturday. Slightly testing but nothing out of reach with a bit of application. NE corner was the last to succumb. Some clever clues including my Fav 17a. Thanks to Mysteron and commiserations with BD over hard disc problems (get well soon!) however TVM Gazza for assuming the mantle

  4. Found that the ‘downs’ yielded more rapidly than the ‘acrosses’ this morning although nothing caused a great deal of angst.
    An enjoyable solve with 17d taking the laurels followed by 17a & 6d.

    Thanks to Mr Saturday Ron and to Gazza for manning the fort.
    Hope BD manages to sort out his hard disc problems in time to bring us today’s NTSPP.

  5. Agree with you Gazza, 3a doesn’t work very well for me either but all in all, a great Saturday workout. Thanks to you and Mr Ron.

  6. 2* / 3*. In spite of some dodgy surfaces, this made a pleasant and relatively untaxing start to the weekend with only 17d, my last one in and favourite, holding out for a while.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Gazza.

  7. A very gentle Easter Saturday romp, easily completed in ** time. 3a worked fine for me. COTD, as others have mentioned, was a clear winner at 17a.

    Many thanks to the setter and Gazza.

  8. 16d – listening to the Shipping Forecast interrupting Test Match Special for years and years has finally been worthwhile.

    Rain later. Good!

  9. 3a doesn’t work for me either, but loved the rest, especially 17a.

    Put the present tense in for 20d until I saw Gazza’s hint…..doh!

    Many thanks to the setter and to Gazza.

  10. Thanks for stepping into blogging spot today Gazza. I agree that 3a was a bit dodgy, I was going to pencil it in and check the parsing later but the little scribble bit is mainly the same hue as my pencil (elephant grey) so I have been using a pen today.
    Started in the NE and largely went clockwise by quadrant today. Had a bit of spelling prob with 22a which made 17d LOI
    8a fave a nose ahead of 6d and 16d.
    Thanks to Gazza and setter. Good luck with the reinstall BD.

  11. Reasonably straightforward but still very enjoyable and completed at gallop – **/***.

    I didn’t have any issues with 3a; I thought the ‘?’ at the end made it ‘work.’

    Candidates for favourite – 5d, 17d, and 20d – and the winner is 20d.

    Thanks to the setter and Gazza.

  12. Not taxing, but nevertheless enjoyable. 17D was my favorite. Thanks to the Saturday setter and Gazza.

  13. Agree that puzzle relatively straightforward. My favourite today was 16D – a GK clue that wasn’t sport related and which gave a little fillip of joy to those listen to R4 at unseasonable hours of the day …. I guess that includes you Stan!

    Last to go in was 6a just cos it was – I couldn’t immediately see the link and so moved on – only to find it was still lurking there when I’d finished all the others – So after a while and after looking up the definition (framework was what was giving me problems) – I decided that I had got the right answer after all!

    Thanks to setter and to Gazza

  14. Long time lurker enjoying re-learning the art of crypticness. So thank you!

    I was pleased that for the first time I didn’t refer to this blog to complete the puzzle – so it obvioulsy was easy then! :)

    But I can’t work out the parsing for 24a. I have an answer I think is right based on “that man” and “caught cold” for first three letters, but no idea how “touring island” is for the last three letters.

    Unless it’s cricketing “caught”? Then last letter is for “cold” and an initial for Island? Seems clunky to me for that to be right?

    1. I think you mean 21a rather than 24a.

      21a That man caught cold touring island getting feverish (6)
      A male pronoun (that man) is followed by abbreviations for caught (in cricket) and cold containing an abbreviation for island.

      1. Thank you Gazza. And apols for my typo on the clue and I should have put the whole clue down!

        Going to have to bone up on cricket (being from N. Ireland, I’m not big on the game!

  15. Super Saturday once again, the Saturday prize puzzle always seems to be the right sort of puzzle for me. As usual really enjoyed today’s puzzle, lots of great clues that fell into place apart from the SW quarter that held me up for a brief period. Last in 11a not a word I’m familiar with? A good puzzle to finish the week off.

    Clues of the day: 1d / 6d stood out for me today.

    Rating 2.5* / 4*

    Thanks to Gazza and the setter.

  16. Big Dave,

    Any ntspp today, Possible delays today as I have just become a virgin.


    Denis Donohue

  17. Hardest one for weeks for me. Never heard of 8a, 12d, 11a.
    3 hours of utter 9a for me.
    Thanks all.

  18. An enjoyable puzzle, but I was stuck for ages on 12 down until I remembered the opening line of my old school song
    “O, 12 down glorious”

    Thanks again to the setter and the contributors to this site.

  19. 5d was last in . Simple though it was. Just had other types of record on my mind. 17a made me smile. Thank you setter and Gazza.

  20. Much enjoyment today, lots to like.
    Last in, and requiring electronic help, was 16d, not surprising that, a bit obscure.
    Didn’t know the duck in 6d, a quick google sorted that.
    Fave was 17a, followed by 13d, great movies.
    Thanks to our Saturday setter and to Gazza for filling in.
    I’m so untechie, I thought BD had problems in his back and was feeling so sorry for him! Oh well.

  21. 2/2.5. Agree with Gazza – 3a was a stretch. The rest was fairly straightforward but not sparkling. Maybe 12d was favourite by a hair. Thanks to all. Seem to be swinging from spring to winter on a daily basis.

  22. I really can’t see the problem with 3a.

    “Ding, Ding, Service? I’d like half a dozen 3as please.”

    1. I echo that, but they have to be the chunky ones you get in Brick Lane, not the pale imitations in supermarkets.

      I’ve never come across the expression in 8a in either meaning, that of the clue or the answer.

  23. No probs with 3a for me…. the question mark gave the clue the necessary credibility.
    Not bad for a Saturday; 14d was my top clue, and overall 2/3*
    Thanks to the setter, and to Gazza for depping duties.

  24. This felt tricky while solving, and more than once I ground to a halt, but still managed to finish in ** time so perhaps it wasn’t quite so hard after all. The north of the grid took somewhat longer to fill than the rest… All good fun, nevertheless.

    1. Welcome to the blog, Jacqueline

      13a Detective, 50, breaking into houses (6)
      Insert the Roman numeral for 50 into another word for houses to get the name of a famous fictional detective.

  25. First pass revealed little for me. Had a sleep and when I returned all was well. I doubt if I would have solved 3ac if it weren’t for the “down clue” letters (I’m not sure how you say this in crossword parlance).

    Thanks Gazza and setter.

  26. Finished earlier today and was waiting for more comments before I replied. However, comments rather sparse for a Saturday. Perhaps it is because it is Easter. I found no problem with 3a. As Gazza says – ring shaped, and served in a Jewish Bakery. There cannot be many contenders for the answer. One of my favourites together with 1a (for its simplicity) 13 and 17a. Like many others the latter has to be the favourite. Down favourites 7 and 14. Slight hold up with 25a as I was thinking of other types of cooler. Only problem for me and I am not sure that I have got it – is 6a. No hint for this as presumably straight forward and so far as I can see only one commentator admits to a problem. Thanks for puzzle and for the review and for alll the comments.

    1. Hi Wanda,
      6a – the definition is a ‘frame’ and it’s made up of the usual abb. for ‘son’ followed by a 3 letter word for ‘remains’.

  27. Still learning about Cryptic Crosswords. A good day for me, getting 17a as my first result. Probably stupid but had trouble with 6ac which was my last word and still can’t explain the answer.

    1. You’ve expanded your alias so your comment needed moderation. Both versions will work from now on.
      See Jane’s response to Wanda for an explanation of 6a.

  28. I’m in the ‘didn’t-care-much-for-3a-but-I-suppose-it-was-okay’ camp. Perhaps because they have to be the most massively overrated things.
    Rather liked 1d for its mis-direction and 3d. Would have favourited 17d along with Rabbit D but I have seen that clue before somewhere.
    Yes, this was not hard but it was fun. **/***
    Was playing my old LPs today – great fun. In these days of AI and Digital everything its somehow very reassuring to take a piece of vinyl out of its sleeve which you have had for almost half a century and it still holds its own.
    Happy Easter everyone.

  29. Finished in two sittings with the northeast corner being the last. We’re in the ‘not keen on 3a’ camp but otherwise enjoyed the puzzle. Interesting reading the comments of clues we thought straightforward but it’s good noting how we all see and read things in different ways and sometimes come up with different answers until the proverbial penny drops. Thanks all.

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