NTSPP – 432 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 432

NTSPP – 432

A Puzzle by Silvanus

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

Firstly, a big thank you to Mr CS, without whose emergency dash to buy a new ink cartridge, I’d have had problems (as a paper solver) with both solving this puzzle and scribbling my notes for this review

Thank you also to Silvanus – such a shame this puzzle appeared on a weekend with two notable events taking place, not to mention the sort of weather that was more conducive to being outside than sitting indoors with a crossword


1a Sensational comic gets booking (6,4)
YELLOW CARD I didn’t know this colour was an informal term meaning sensational, but I did know the eccentric person (comic)

6a Not best conductor, but one given principal role (4)
LEAD A metal which doesn’t conduct electricity well has the same name as a principal role

10a Country’s capital should be last place for trouble (5)
PAINS Simply take the capital S of a particular European country and move it to the last place of that word

11a Manager seizes quiet hour switching to foreign channel (9)
BOSPHORUS An informal term for a manager ‘seizes’ the musical abbreviation for quiet and an anagram (switching) of HOUR to produce a Turkish waterway (channel)

12a Made cuts in distribution of seed corn (8)
CENSORED An anagram (distribution) of SEED CORN

13a Courtyard of bistro, it appears to face west (5)
PATIO – Lurking in reverse (facing west in an Across clue) this courtyard can be found in bistrO IT APpears

15a Discuss once more location for retirement (7)
RETREAT Split 2, 5 this word might be said to mean to discuss once more

17a Unpeel a sticker that keeps flexible (7)
ELASTIC Another lurker – this time in unpeEL A STICker

19a Shaven-headed EastEnders actor said to be stuffy (7)
AIRLESS How someone from the East End might describe a shaven-headed person

21a Wine merchant‘s savings essentially meeting gap in turnover (7)
VINTNER The ‘essential’ or middle letters of saVINgs meeting a reversal (in turnover) of a gap or tear

22a Vault from keen personal trainer (5)
CRYPT Keen here is a verb meaning to lament and a synonym for this word should be followed by the abbreviation for Personal Trainer

24a Shares fresh sake after knocking back gin (8)
PARTAKES An anagram (fresh) of SAKE goes after a reversal of a snare or gin

27a Disrespect independent member surrounded by rolling acres (9)
SACRILEGE The abbreviation for Independent and a member of the body ‘surrounded’ by an anagram (rolling) of ACRES

28a One-time BBC programme’s musical interval (5)
THIRD This is the second time this week this particular one-time BBC programme has turned up in a crossword – however, here the word also relates to a musical interval

29a Catch old commentator on the radio (4)
SNAG This might be unfair to anyone who doesn’t remember this particular old radio commentator – a homophone (on the radio) of his surname produces a verb meaning to catch

30a Island practice succeeded as office of 9 (4,6)
HOLY ORDERS Another name for the Island of Lindisfarne, a practice or arrangement, and the abbreviation for succeeded


1d Off-putting problem? (4)
YIPS Not being a golfer, I will admit to using the handy ‘reveal letter’ feature in order to solve this clue. Apparently, the solution is a sporting, especially golfing, term for a nervous twitching caused by tension before making a shot, etc

2d City of steel and rice production (9)
LEICESTER An anagram (production) of STEEL and RICE

3d Rock musicians love Status Quo? (5)
OASIS The letter that represents love in a tennis score followed by an informal way of saying as it stands (the status quo)

4d Burmese perhaps restricting naked entertainment in nightclubs (7)
CABARET The animal of which a Burmese is an example (perhaps) ‘restricting’ another word for naked

5d What’s left of stay to take in university (7)
RESIDUE The abbreviation for University is ‘taken in’ by a verb meaning to stay

7d Feel disappointed getting defaced flyer (5)
EGRET Deface or remove the first letter from another way of saying feel disappointed

8d Frustrate police officers’ union (10)
DISCONCERT An abbreviated way of saying Detective Inspectors (police officers’) and a synonym for union

9d Comedian entertained ambition originally to become a cleric (8)
CHAPLAIN A silent comedian ‘entertained’ A (ambition originally)

14d Announces players in support of England cricketer (10)
BROADCASTS Some players support or go below (in a Down clue) the surname of Stuart, the England cricketer

16d Thrilling company for game of Monopoly (8)
ELECTRIC One of the utility companies found on a Monopoly board

18d Rage over home covered in extremely terrible colour (9)
TANGERINE Some rage and the usual crossword substitute for ‘home’ covered, or inserted into, the extreme letters of TerriblE

20d Upset customer pushes, holding person in overall charge (7)
SUPREMO Another reverse (upset) lurker, this time in custOMER PUShes

21d Sort of theatrical entertainment (7)
VARIETY A synonym for sort can also be an adjective relating to music hall entertainment

23d Plant‘s in disgusting mess having root removed roughly (5)
YUCCA Remove the root or final letter of a disgusting mess and follow with the Latin abbreviation meaning about, roughly

25d Comparatively stupid leader disregarded following (5)
AFTER Another disregard the leading letter clue, this time take the first letter from another way of saying comparatively stupid

26d Starts to observe dog devouring steak scraps (4)
ODDS The ‘starts’ to Observe Dog Devouring Steak

19 comments on “NTSPP – 432

  1. Very enjoyable, Silvanus. Don’t understand 1d, but I’ll work it out. (revealed)
    Thanks for the work out

  2. Great stuff, Silvanus, plus I learned a couple of new definitions in 1a and the second part of 30a. Hadn’t realised that the abbreviation in 22a is in the BRB (of course it is!) and confess to having to engage the help of Mr Google with the chap in 29a.

    Plenty of ticks in evidence and I think 1d was probably my favourite – cleverly done, Sir.

    Many thanks for the puzzle, I’m sure others will find it equally enjoyable.

  3. Very enjoyable, completed while watching ‘you know what’ – extensive coverage on Canadian TV all week.

    Extensive list of candidates for favourite, so, special mentions to 11a, 29a, and 30a, But, top honours go to 1d – may they long be absent from my golf game.

    Thank you Silvanus.

  4. Very nice variety of clues, thanks Silvanus.

    I’ve never come across the synonym for sensational before, although it is in my ODE, so must be kosher.

    I ticked 10a, 11a, 24a,1d and 3d; very enjoyable solve.

  5. Thanks Sylvanus, a very enjoyable solve.

    I didn’t know 1a could mean sensational, but there it is in brb.

    I didn’t know the bbc programme or the commentator, didn’t look them up just assumed they must be there. Very happy i didn’t need to know any east ender actors. 22d players is tricky, not wrong i suppose, though it is really groups of players to account for the last S.

    I loved the Rock musicians who liked the Quo (3d), the burmese party-poopers (5d), and the comedian with higher aspirations (9d). also liked the foreign channel.

    Great stuff, many thanks

    1. I think it was the same commentator, covering the boat race on one occasion, who famously stated, “I can’t see who’s winning, but it’s either Oxford or Cambridge!”

  6. We guessed correctly for 29a from the definition and then did a Google search. No way could we have ever known that one. Really enjoyed the rest of it. 10a held us up longer than it should have. Think that the S ending misdirected us from spotting the definition in the clue. Good fun and a pleasure to solve.
    Thanks Silvanus.

  7. Many thanks to everyone for their comments, they are much appreciated.

    Thanks also in advance to CS for her review tomorrow.

  8. Unlike everyone else, I had trouble with some of these clues and have four parsing question marks that will no doubt be resolved tomorrow. I had to resort to revealing letters for 1D. What the heck is that about?

    1. brb explains all – i hadn’t heard of it before crossword-land, but if you are a golfer it may be common enough!

  9. I came to this one a day late having been otherwise engaged yesterday (rugby, not wedding hype) and I enjoyed it a lot. The clues are all beautifully smooth and I am old enough to remember the old programme and the old commentator (I recall his boat race commentary on the radio which seemed to consist largely of intoning ‘In … Out’ over and over again).
    Lots to like including 6a, 4d and 21d but my favourite (because it took me some time to parse) was 10a.
    Thanks a lot Silvanus.

  10. Really enjoyed this. Surfaces as smooth as the proverbial baby’s bottom. Got most of it done yesterday, but had to leave 1d and 10a to go and watch the footie. Reading comments today, the golf references helped me get1d (very clever play on ‘putting’) and then 10a was clear.
    Other favourites 1,19,24 across and 3,4,16 and 21 down
    Many thanks Silvanus, and a pleasure to meet you the other day

  11. Many thanks for the well illustrated review, CS, I particularly liked the distraught golfer at 1d and smiled at the well-known Eastender whom I tried very hard to incorporate into my answer for 19a.

    Thanks again to Silvanus – hope the next one’s waiting in the wings.

  12. I thought this was a beautifully crafted puzzle. However, had it not been for the very positive comments early on in the blog yesterday, I would have discarded this to the recycling bin without realizing how good it was. In the north-west corner alone, I had not heard of 1d (I am not a golfer), the rock group in 3d (I go out of my way to avoid rock music), or the meaning of sensational as used in 1a. The commentator in 29a gets thrown in there as well. I am very glad I persevered, and thank you Silvanus, but my enjoyment level and satisfaction from the solve, in the certainty that I would not be able to not finish, took a fair beating in the process.

  13. I obtained this one at the library yesterday (Tues) and tackled it after lunch – better late than never! I thought it was excellent – top-class, well-written clues, a decent challenge and a very enjoyable solve. My favs: 11a, 27a and 3d. It’s hard to compare, but I’d rate it about equivalent to an average Giovanni back-pager (and his are consistently very good). If it was on the DT back page I’d give it 3* / 4*.

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