DT 28845 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28845 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28845 (Hints)

The 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    Recording everything produced by pop act, high or tripping (12)
An anagram (tripping) of POP ACT HIGH OR

8a    Scribbling heartlessly after love split (7)
A verb meaning scribbling or writing without its middle letter (heartlessly) preceded by O (love)

11a    BBC or Channel 5, say? Lad consumes rubbish one (7)
A lad goes around some rubbish and I (one)

14a    Give up on French — translate (9)
The French for “on” is followed by a verb meaning to translate

16a    Cuts out about 13 physical jerks (9)
A verb meaning cuts out goes around the regnal cipher of the answer to 13 Across

21a    Outfit uniform this person’s found beyond price (7)
The letter represented by uniform in the NATO Phonetic alphabet and the two-letter pronoun for “this person” preceded by (found beyond) the price

24a    Notice cutter’s sails repeatedly up and down (7)
A three-letter verb meaning to notice is followed by a cutter and the S from ‘S

26a    Restlessly lie in — neglect to give reason (12)
An anagram (restlessly) of LIE IN NEGLECT


1d    Set up rapper to get busted with drug (7)
An anagram (to get busted) of RAPPER followed by one of our usual drugs

3d    More than one living being made from India following keyboard text service (9)
A keyboard instrument followed by the letter represented by India in the NATO Phonetic alphabet and a mobile text service

5d    Tommy‘s secret (7)
… a Tommy (or Tommy Atkins) is a name that used to be used for a low-ranking soldier in the British Army

6d    Had round in time to meet journalist after six (7)
IN from the clue then T(ime) and our usual journalist preceded by the Roman numerals for six

7d    Crime series creates results (12)
Split as (3,9) this could be a crime series

15d    On offensive, not in at the beginning or ending (9)
A two-letter word meaning on or about followed by an adjective meaning offensive without the IN at the beginning

17d    Like Tibet and Nepal, banning anything odd, authoritarian (7)
The even letters (, banning anything odd) of Nepal followed by an adjective meaning authoritarian or strict

19d    Worry no one’s bag will turn up (7)
A charade of NO from the clue, I (one), the S from ‘S and a verb meaning to bag or catch, all reversed (will turn up)

20d    Abbreviation — abbreviation of 17, to be exact (7)
An abbreviation or summary is followed by the abbreviation of the answer to 17 Down

22d    Moderate undermined by Left — that holds up work (5)
A verb meaning to moderate or alleviate followed (undermined) by L(eft)

The Crossword Club is now open.

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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!

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The Quick Crossword pun: sow+fend+peer=Southend Pier

87 comments on “DT 28845 (Hints)

  1. I found this quite testing for a Saturday, but all the more enjoyable and rewarding for it. I particularly liked 24a and 17d. Thanks very much to our setter and BD.

  2. Off to a flying start , steady progress then left with the last two , 3D and 15D . Several words seemed to fit each but…… Took the plunge and submitted my entry before hints .
    Several favourites , excluding above two , without an outstanding one .
    Off to Salisbury now to take in all the sights/sites , only takes a short time according to my Russian guide !
    Thanks everyone .

  3. I thought this was excellent with some clever misdirection to the anagrams. COTD = 20d, LOI = 24a

    Is it me or has the answer to 3d come up very often recently?

    Thanks to the setter and to BD for the hints.

    1. Yes, 3d has appeared recently, but since this is a prize puzzle I can’t say where.

      It’s not surprising, since with answers chosen at random we expect, on average, about eight repeated answers in every 21 puzzles.

  4. I found this harder than most Saturday puzzles but very enjoyable to solve. 7D was my cotd, many thanks to the setter & to our leader BD for his hints.

  5. Thought this one continued the recent theme of Saturday puzzles being a little more challenging but no problems to report beyond, like NaXword, taking a while to settle on the correct answer for 15d.
    No particular favourite but enjoyed the puzzle.

    Thanks to Mr Ron and to BD for the club.

  6. First run through gave only two answers but then I gradually got onto wavelength and very much enjoyed the work-out which yielded in the North first. Liked use of ‘dicky’ in 10d so that’s my joint Fav together with 9a. Thank you Mysteron and BD.

  7. A bit of a head scratcher with a few Hmms and raised eyebrows at the finish. As others have said, today’s puzzle appears to be continuing the trend of recent Saturday challenges.

    No real standout favourites, although 16a was reasonably good.

    Thanks to the setter and BD.

  8. Really really tricky. Far too hard for a back pager in my opinion. I think he crossword editor is looking to limit the entries.
    All done after two visits except for 19a, 23a and 15d – as always no hints for the tricky clues😁.

    1. Can’t imagine why CL would want to limit prize crossword entries – in fact he would surely want to encourage them?

  9. I’ve struggled a bit this week, but flew through this one. Everything seemed so straightforward. 2d and 20d were favourites. Thank you setter and BD. Off to cook Craster kippers for lunch. ( They were meant to be for breakfast but I couldn’t be bothered to cook, I had a pile of ironing to do)

        1. Flo, I am impressed you found this straightforward !
          It took me ages to get going thanks then to getting 7d and thanks to BD for a couple of confirmations.
          Brian summed it up, too many submissions…!

          1. It’s just a mindset thing. I’ve often struggled when others found it easy. I lost confidence earlier in the week and was a bit demoralised, so just pleased I could finish this one without the tussle.

  10. After my struggles last night with the toughie I am happy to say I completed this without recourse to your lovely hints. Lots to like, thanks all round. Now to start cooking ready for dinner and a canasta rematch. Glorious sunshine in Cambridge with spitfires doodling overhead rehearsing for next week’s Duxford display.

  11. ****/****. I found this quite difficult and it took a while to get on the setters wavelength. Some good clues though and particularly liked 23&24a and 10d for the anagram indicator. 12a was a bung in as I had two words in mind and can’t parse either. Thanks to all.

  12. What a hard slog. Nothing at all on my first pass. Then the eastern side started to fall in and once I got 1a I sort of worked round in an anti-clockwise direction.
    How I managed to finish it I don’t know.
    Thanks to both

  13. Found this really challenging and got off to a very slow start but persevered and gradually it came together. Lots of Lego clues to build and really had to read the clues very carefully. Had a couple of answers I struggled to parse 15d and 17d both included on the blog fortunately. First in13a and last in 4d. A difficult but enjoyable solve pleased to have finished it, thought at one stage it was above my level.

    Clues of the day: 16a / 7d

    Rating: 4* / 4*

    Thanks to BD and the setter.

  14. Very, very tricky, I needed hints to finish, but most enjoyable.
    Fave was 7d, but I thought 14a was pretty clever too.
    Thanks to the Saturday setter and to BD for the hints.

  15. A trickier puzzle today which seems to be following a trend based on recent Saturdays.

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

  16. Have finished this but not a clue why 12a or 13a are the answers. Help please! Much trickier than the normal Saturday ones.

    1. 12a shower is a verb not a noun so you need a synonym for shower where you change the letters that appear on taps

      13a has all the signs that tell you it is a lurker type clue

      1. I got that’s 13a is a lurker it’s the definition of essence that I can’t get. No still not got 12a – maybe I have the wrong answer.

  17. Looking at the Quick Crossword while waiting for the computer and then internet to spring into life, I noticed that the bottom row is also a pun

    1. Puns placed top and bottom (and at least once left and right as well) occur from time to time in Tuesday Quickies. Do you know if today’s setter is one of the Tuesday regulars?

  18. Wow that was tough. Like Angelov I had only 2 answers after many passes and much caffeine so I went to buy some cheese but on return braincells still absent. I took to the hints and winkled out a few more but still have too many gaps too ask for more help. I will put it down to a bad day on my part. Perhaps I need some of Miffypops kippers as they are supposed to be brain food.
    Thanks to BD and setter. Please dont go back to easy Saturdays I like the new standard but just had a bad day today.

  19. I thought this was excellent. I particularly liked 9a, 12a (using a wordplay device seen in a recent rookie, I believe), 19a, 23a, 1d, 6d, 10d, 15d, 17d, and 19d. My only reservation was whether ‘unusual’ in 2d is appropriate. Thanks to the setter for the entertainment and to BD for the blog.

    1. It’s not strictly “unusual”, but it is transcendental (real but not a root of an algebraic equation with rational coefficients). My favourite equation is e raised to the power of 2πi = 1 (where e is the base or root of natural logarithms and i is the square root of -1) – I must get a t-shirt with that on!

      1. ?. My brain hurts. I do know that there are 10 types of people who understand the binary system. Those who do and those who don’t

      2. Comment Etiquette: Rule 16?
        But it’s your game so you make the rules..😂😂
        P.S. impressive knowledge – sadly I might have once understood it 😫

              1. I haven’t seen it derived that way. Sounds interesting, so you’ll have to show me how it goes at the bash.

          1. There was an old man of Bengal
            Who had a mathematical ball
            It’s mass by it’s weight was four fifths of five eighths of **** all😉

  20. Tricky but enjoyable, I started quickly and was getting quite excited until I ground to a halt. The hints and Mr Google helped me finish. Nothing was really difficult or obtuse though. Thanks to setter and BD.

  21. Continuing the recent trend of tricky prize crosswords this was certainly a prime example! I had several uncertain moments as I solved it and although I completed it there are still a couple of bung-ins which I have yet to parse.
    Oh well. 16a was COTD.
    Thanks to the setter, and to BD for the hints.

  22. A fun, challenging puzzle, just right for a Saturday. A bit of a different style to usual, I thought, and quite inventive.

  23. This was hard work but satisfying. I particularly liked 3d, I don’t care if it’s an old chestnut I was really pleased when I cracked it. BD you are a star, not only a wordsmith but a mathematician as well! Thanks to you and the setter.

  24. I liked 20 d and it helped with 17d .Lots of amusing clues .
    The lower half was trickier than the top .
    My thanks to the setter and BD.

  25. Bit of a head-scratcher, but pleasing to complete unaided.
    Lots of good clues, thanks BD for the hints and Mr.Ron for the challenge.

  26. All done but not sure about12a whether the answer is shower or break. Two possibilities fulfilling the change taps premise. Generally harder like last week . Have followed this site for ages and enjoy the comments.

    1. Welcome to the blog Hawkes

      12a Break shower switching taps? (7)
      There is no ambiguity in the clue – the definition (break) is derived by taking shower and “switching taps” – the other way around does not make sense.

  27. Peoples brains work differently, I sometimes find an explanation I wanted is missing whereas some that seem easy are explained. In this case 1d (explained) seemed very straightforward to me while 2d (no explanation) had me really struggling to justify 🤔

    1. One of my self-imposed rules is that I always give hints for the first and last Across and Down clues, which gives 4 out of approximately 16 hints.

      I had thought that 2d was easy, perhaps I was wrong:

      2d Cause of tears when knife is wielded, with unusual number arrested getting conviction (7)
      Something that is the cause of tears when cut (knife is wielded) around (arrested) a two-letter “unusual” number.

      1. Thanks, I did manage to work it out in the end, but took me for ages, then a bit of a “doh” moment, had forgotten all about **!

  28. Only just looked at yesterdays puzzle and thought it great fun but really “tough”. I am surprised that no-one thought it could possibly be by the alternate Thursday maestro as it had the hallmarks – single word answers; well-stretched synonyms and even an indirect inclusion of Her Maj. Still, if the black belts on here didn’t see it, I’m most likely wide of the mark.

    1. Take a look at the associated Quick Crossword – that’s definitely not one of his. With only a handful of exceptions, both Quick and Cryptic crosswords on a given day are by the same setter.

        1. I believe it will. I used to think RayT un-doable, but persevered – with great help from here, and now look forward to his puzzles.
          Do you have any ideas who the mystery setters for Saturdays?

  29. I know this is late (yesterday was spent travelling) but what was the picture attached to 14 across? I recognise it, but simply can’t remember from where …
    Hopeful thanks in advance!

  30. A bit late to the game but I thought this was the perfect puzzle – a bit of a challenge but I finished without any help (unusual for me) and many of the answers made me smile.

  31. I liked this one a lot, as BD says not massively difficult but quite a few of the clues were constructed in a rather different/unconventional way and they took just a little longer to fathom. Quite refreshing, really. A very enjoyable solve. 3* / 4*

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