DT 28924 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 28924

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 28924

Hints and tips by a heavy-hearted Miffypops

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment **

Good Morning from the sunny heart of Downtown LI. I enjoyed this puzzle for a very short time. It seems we are back to less challenging Monday solving which will suit the novices. Do let us know if you complete a puzzle unaided for the first time. We can share in your good feeling.

The hints and tips are written to help and I hope they do. Illustrations may or may not be relevant. The answers lie beneath the greyed-out boxes known as spoilers. You may reveal them if all else has failed or if you just can’t be bothered anymore

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a Wanting money for a biscuit (10)
SHORTBREAD: Two synonyms are required here. One for wanting, one a slang term for money. The result is a biscuit that is fun to make with children. Just make sure their hands are clean when doing so

6a Cutting remark in pub — banter, initially (4)
BARB: A term meaning a pub is followed by the first or initial letter of banter. A bit of banter with one of these attached – priceless

9a Runs in a boy responsible for a major crime (5)
ARSON: The letter A from the clue and one’s male offspring are separated by the cricket abbreviation for runs

10a Fungal growth in amphibians also by lake (9)
TOADSTOOL: A frog like amphibian (plural to match the clue) is followed by an adverb meaning in addition or also. This in turn is followed by the abbreviation for lake. The surface read of this clue is so weak that it is meaningless

12a Filth in quadrangle mostly occupied by lot wasting time (7)
SQUALOR: Remove (mostly) the last letter of an equally sided quadrangle. Insert (occupied by) the word lot from the clue but minus the abbreviation for time

13a Game show (5)
CHESS: The answer is a clever board game and a musical show which ranks lower than Cats in my opinion. Never again for either show.

15a Pilot finding accommodation in Belgravia to rent (7)
AVIATOR: This clue doesn’t ask or tell us to do anything. There is no instruction. It is merely a statement about a geezer finding digs in London. When one is staring blankly at a clue like this one should switch to lurker alert mode. Look for words like in, some, or part. We have the word in. The answer is lurking amongst the words of the clue. Seek it out. If it isn’t obvious (as it is in this case) look for reversal indicators such as back or returns and see if it is lurking in reverse.

16a Boss, first of all, must fill feeding trough (7)
MANAGER: The first letter of the word all needs to be inserted into the type of feeding trough mentioned in the story of the nativity. Luke 2.12

18a Do a number about family going under (7)
SINKING: To do a number here means to make musical sounds with the voice. Insert a noun meaning ones family or relations

20a Simple-minded soul in front holding one end of tether (7)
AIRHEAD: Begin with a word meaning in front. Insert the letter that looks like the number one and the final (end of) letter of the word tether

21a Not living together may be a factor (5)
APART: The first section of the clue is rather obvious the second needs the answer to be split 1,4 to satisfy the clue

23a Bring in a pamphlet about temperature (7)
ATTRACT: A three-part charade. A from the clue. A pamphlet. The abbreviation for temperature. Place them in the order suggested by the clue

25a Soldier wearing suitable American gear (9)
APPARATUS: We also have three parts to this clue. The soldier is a paratrooper. We need his shortened name. He needs to wear or be surrounded by an adjective meaning suitable or appropriate. We then need the American abbreviation for the United States

26a Mad discarding spades? Senseless (5)
INANE: A word meaning in a state of mind which prevents normal perception, behaviour, or social interaction; seriously mentally ill needs to lose the abbreviation for spades. The word mad is very unkind to those who suffer as described above

27a Reportedly shabby in appearance (4)
MIEN: A word meaning shabby in behaviour sounds like one’s deportment or bearing.

28a Strangers surprisingly committing small sin (10)
TRANSGRESS: Anagram (surprisingly) of STRANGERS around (committing) the abbreviation for small


1d Photograph taken on the spur of the moment (4)
SNAP: A double definition and rather obvious it is too.

2d Fixed idea of old boy prior to meeting (9)
OBSESSION: The abbreviation for Old Boy precedes a meeting of an official body, especially a legislature, council, or court of law, to conduct its business.

3d What’s difficult to say to winter guest that’s shivering? (6-7)
TONGUE TWISTER: I am pretty sure that this is an anagram of something but I bunged this in because it fit in with the checkers I had. TO WINTER GUEST (that’s shivering)

4d Animal used to kill vermin catches large snake (7)
RATTLER: An animal such as a Jack Russell which is used to kill vermin needs the abbreviation for large inserting. An excellent surface read that will have novices to cryptic solving looking for anacondas and boa constrictors. The answer is also a Cornish cider that is quite moorish.

5d What can make spotter protest? (7)
ANAGRAM: My last one in. Look carefully at the words spotter and protest. You may notice that they contain the same letters. Now what do we call such a thing?

7d In agreement immediately about leaving (2,3)
AT ONE: A term meaning immediately enumerated 2,4 needs the Latin abbreviation for about removing (about leaving)

8d Absurd tale involved a feature of terrace, perhaps (10)
BALUSTRADE: Anagram (involved) odd ABSURD TALE

11d Support Berkshire university’s presentation in parliament (6,7)
SECOND READING: To support as do boxers helpers followed by a Berkshire university. Possibly the university in Berkshire’s largest town. Possibly Berkshires only university. Who knows?

14d Fear a small resort experienced: unfounded scare? (5,5)
FALSE ALARM: Anagram (resort / re sort) of FEAR A SMALL

17d Dog near gate, barking, circling daughter (5,4)
GREAT DANE: Anagram (barking) of NEAR GATE which encircles the abbreviation of daughter

19d Hard worker working ultimately on beam (7)
GRAFTER: The last letter of working is followed by a beam of wood which is part of the internal framework of a roof

20d Craftsperson, creative type, chopped and chopped (7)
ARTISAN: Remove (chopped and chopped) the final letters of 1. a creative type. 2. The word And from the clue.

22d Porter possibly carrying very soft fruit (5)
APPLE: The Porter here is a type of beer. It needs the musical term for very soft inserting

24d Not as much on, having quit class (4)
LESS: Remove the word on from a period of learning or teaching

The Quick Crossword pun: maker+seen=make a scene

53 comments on “DT 28924

  1. Definitely Monday-ish which suits me as I have a lot of things to get done today (and that’s not just work stuff)

    Thanks to MP for the explanations and the Monday Mysteron for the crossword

    PS Any other newspaper solvers looking forward to the time when the Christmas related adverts stop and we don’t have to play hunt the crossword?

    1. A small price to pay, surely? We’re lucky to have a decent paper at all in these times of instant news, and it needs advertising to survive!

  2. A very mild start to the week, the mildest back-pager I’ve seen for many a while. But as MP says, a good one for the novice solvers. I rather liked 1a, 18a and 5d. 1* / 2*

  3. Pretty straightforward and good fun for a Monday morning. Nice lurker at 15a, 20d my favourite. Thanks to our setter and the heavy-hearted one.

  4. much enjoyed. 7d also my last in when I realised money wasn’t crust. In hints spelling of 27a?
    Thanks to setter and MP

  5. 1* / 3*. Light but fun – just right for a Monday morning. With a couple of notable exceptions, the surfaces were nice and smooth.

    20d was my favourite.

    Many thanks to Campbell (?) and to MP.

  6. Presumably the 27a answer is to see if we are are paying attention As you say straightforward although nothing is ever 1* for me it was */**.
    Thanks to setter & MP for hints.
    Great the homespun Cardiff boy got sports personality made my day.

  7. Many thanks MP for the review. I’ts nice to have an easy one, although without this site, your good self and your fellow stars I would not now be in a position to state that. Fully completing one without electronic assistance was behond me two years ago. One small point re 27ac – I believe the spelling of the hidden answer is incorrect “ie” the middle two letters. Did you see what I did there?

  8. I can’t remember doing a DT crossword much quicker than this, only 5d and 27a held me up for any length of time. Mildly enjoyable, my podium places go to 5&7d and 24a.
    1.5/2.5*…..thanks to setter and MP.

  9. Thanks Miffypops and setter,

    I’m still a novice (I think) yet took a wee bit longer than last Monday’s offering.

    Difficulty is relative after all. It’s a broad church and we all have to start somewhere, but still was happy to complete.

  10. A very gentle start to the week to say the least! Fun while it lasted.
    No favourites.
    Thanks to the setter, and to MP for the review.

  11. A bright and breezy start to the day – just right for someone facing the prospect of a visit to the dentist for a tooth extraction!
    Biggest smiles came from 1&25a.

    Thanks to our setter and to MP for the blog.

    1. Missed you at the dentist . I was there earlier for a filling and left my iPad there with the crossword partially completed .!!

  12. A nice steady solve for me,and I don’t say that very often. Only stuck on 27a,bunged in the correct answer but couldn’t relate it to shabby(I can now,thanks MP)
    Thanks to the setter and MP.
    P.S. I’m probably wrong but shouldn’t the hint for 27a be the other way round. Tin hat on waiting for flack.

  13. For those of us that are indeed novices (and I most certainly am)….this site is a true blessing!

    Thanks to Big Dave for creating, and to MP and the setter today.

    Four left at the end of the time I could spend, but at least I now know and understand the explanations for those I was stuck on!

  14. Completed ok but Interrupted by dentist , shopping , back to dentist to pick up forgotten iPad , home for lunch , then finished .

    Liked 1A and 5D best .

    Thanks to everyone .

  15. Thanks to the setter and to Miffypops for the review and hints. I enjoyed this while it lasted, very straightforward start to the week. Good fun, nothing too difficult. I liked 20d,but my favourite and last in was 5d. Was 1*/3* for me.

  16. LOI WAS 7dn which was my favourite today. Held up for a while too by 12ac, but all in all a satisfacrory start to the week.

    Thanks all.

  17. */***. Enjoyable while it lasted. And 10 answers starting with A. Thanks to the setter for a gentle start to the week and MP for the (unneeded but amusing) hints.

  18. Like CS, so grateful for an easy solve today, so much to do and so late getting up.
    Thanks to M’pops for unravelling 5d, the answer had to be but couldn’t figure it out. Now, wasn’t that clever?
    I loved it all, maybe 1a is fave?
    Thanks to the setter and to M’pops for his fun blog. Why the heavy heart? Remember what Scarlett said, tomorrow’s another day.

    1. Yes – why the ‘heavy hearted’ Miffypops?
      Tomorrow is, indeed, another day and, thankfully, two weeks tomorrow will be a new year – good riddance to 2018 is all I can say.

  19. Thanks to the setter for a good mental warm up for the rest of the week. But how many times do you hear of Footy players (whatever you favourite code) getting injured in the warm up😜

    Like MP, 5d was my last. Today’s favourites, 15a, as it’s my line of work. And 20a and 20d.

  20. Nice straightforward puzzle with some really good clues */*** 😃 Favorites 10a & 5d 🤗 Thanks to MP and to the Setter

  21. No great probs but enjoyable for all that. Just one thing, I don’t quite understand the hint for 20d, perhaps it’s the capitalisation of And which is throwing me.
    Thx to all

  22. Looking at the number of comments already it’s good to see how many enjoyed this as much as I did. I am not a novice but crosswords that more experienced and capable solvers may enjoy often leave me frustrated. One of the benefits of the DT over the Guardian is a regularly doable crossword. Many thanks to setter – I really enjoyed it, to solver and to the DT for consistently over so many years providing us with such great crosswords.

  23. Saw the musical in 13a at the Prince Edwards’s Theatre in the eighties. Remember Elaine Paige but can’t recall anything about the play. Must have fell asleep.
    Mind you it was the same with Cats. The New London. What an awful theatre. Only remember the make up in that one.
    Shall I carry on with Starlight Express? I think I will spare you.
    Agree that it was on the gentle side but 27a took a while.
    Thanks to the setter and to MP for the review.

  24. I’m still one of the novices (though I’ve doing these these for years) and liked today’s
    Only faltered on one clue – and still can’t believe I didn’t see 5d !!!

  25. Yes indeed a lot of fun with little hassle. It’s good now and again to have a walk in the park. I do however have to admit to some bung-ins – two of which (5d and 7d) became Favs. Was OK with the snake in 4d but was unaware of MP’s Cornish cider. Thank you Mysteron for the puzzle and MP for enlightening hints.

  26. Didn’t get to this until lunch time, due to breakfast out. Even I thought it was gentle. Very pleased to be able to complete with just a couple of hints, 5d being last in. Why I could see that myself, heavens knows. Yes a great one for novices, and for those of us who sadly will never reach the Toughie level. Thanks to setter and to Miffypops.

  27. This seemed pretty straightforward to me but I’ve been doing cryptic crosswords for ages.
    I do think that we need some like this to encourage new solvers – perhaps there are more out there who are too shy to comment – come on – now is the day to comment for the first time – you would be welcomed.
    No major problems but then I’d be embarrassed to say so if there had been.
    I did rather like 10a. I make a mean 1a so I liked that too.
    Do we know who today’s setter is? Thanks to whoever he or she may be.
    With thanks to MP too – making the effort required to do the hints when feeling ‘heavy hearted’ is tough.

    1. With pleasure John.
      The def is Craftsperson: Artist without the t (creative type chopped) followed by And without the d ( and chopped).

  28. Hooray I’ve completed a Monday crossword all on my own and really enjoyed double checking my answers and reading the comments. Thank you Miffypops and setter. All is well in my world!

    1. Yay! :yahoo: Pleased for you. No crossword snobbery to be found on BD’s excellent blog. Well done Granny helen! (I’ve got a feeling I’ll be Grandpa Roy soon)

    2. For all the easy peasy grumblers, don’t you really enjoy comments like this one from Granny Helen? That is happiness!

      1. I wrote easy peasy in my preamble but thought better of it and changed it. Yes I love to hear comments like Granny Helens and I hope LBR is correct with his prediction. Well done Granny Helen

  29. No problems. 20d was my favourite. Thank you setter and heavy-hearted MP. Hope that you’ll soon be light-hearted again.

  30. Discovered today that I have been pronoucing the answer to 27a incorrectly. I’ve never actually used the word nor heard anyone else use it, but mentally was pronouncing it wrongly.

  31. I don’t care that it was rated * I loved it. Nice clues

    Ps especially after just returning from skiing and a few refreshments

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