ST 3000 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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ST 3000 (Hints)

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3000 (Hints)

Hints and tips by Senf

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A very happy 93rd to HM and a very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg, where, on Monday, we had white stuff in the morning and a thunderstorm with hail in the evening and then for the rest of the week we had true spring-like weather with highs in the mid-teens.

Today, a milestone in Sunday puzzling, my 116th consecutive blog and it’s also ST puzzle number 3,000.  Dada showing us some benevolence with a higher than usual number of anagrams, two lurkers (one reversed), and one homophone, but no themed clues for Easter, in an asymmetric 28 clues..

Candidates for favourite – 3d and 8d.

Don’t forget to follow BD’s instructions in red at the bottom of the hints!

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, a number of the more difficult clues 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 Mess up and down (5)
A straightforward double definition to start, the second might be feathery.

4a House party in Turkey, not essential (5)
The usual two letter party inserted into TURkey with the synonym for essential removed.

11a Cloak in which to secrete an item of party food (6)
A type of cloak containing (in which to secrete) AN from the clue.

14a Paraphernalia in waste receptacles: harmful thing rejected earlier (7)
A single word for waste receptacles preceded by (earlier) a type of harmful thing reversed (rejected).

19a Article penned by poet, durable material (7)
An (definite) article inserted into (penned by) the surname of the poet, well known for his nonsense poetry.

23a Criticisedas roof may be? (6)
A double definition, the second refers to a particular type of roofing material.

24a Arbitrator made it complex, in other words (8)
An anagram (complex) of MADE IT followed by a single word for in other words.

25a Lions were interfering, did you say? (5)
The homophone (did you say?) of a single word for were interfering.

26a Changes seen in cast, I decided to retire (5)
The reverse lurker, the ‘regular lurker’ is 12a, (seen in . . . to retire) found in the rest of the clue.


2d Member gripping a racket first (7)
A body part (member) containing (gripping) A from the clue and synonym of racket.

3d Perks offered to hairdressers, quite possibly? (6,8)
A part of some hairstyles and a synonym of advantages – this has an air of familiarity about it.

5d Ineffective advice to prodigal? (7)
When written as (3,4) the answer becomes advice to prodigal.

8d Where relocated ring might be, however (2,3,5,4)
A double definition which should be easy enough to spot.

18d Vague description of mammoth? (6)
Another double definition, the second is a type of mammoth.

20d Harmonious relationship, having hit on kind of wine (7)
A synonym of hit followed by a type of (fortified) wine.

22d Face Manchester United, for example? (4)
A single word that can describe Manchester United.

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.

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.

Desmond Dekker and The Aces at the end of a week at number one in April 1969:


49 comments on “ST 3000 (Hints)

  1. Many happy returns of this lovely sunny day to Her Majesty, Big Dave and Libellule.

    A nice friendly Sunday crossword from Dada this week – I’m going to pick the d’oh moment when I realised how 1a worked as my favourite

    I hope everyone has a lovely Easter Sunday whether it is their birthday or not

    1. That was one of my favourites, too. This was just difficult enough to make it a satisfying solve. Ta to Dada. Thx to Senf.

    2. Me also. I spent a while trying to find a palindrome for mess before my brain switched on. Excellent puzzle. Thanks to Dada and Senf.

  2. After a slow start in the N W corner, this puzzle unravelled surprisingly quickly. It was quite gentle for dada, a ** for difficulty and quite enjoyable (****) too. I liked 4a, 2d and 5d. Many thanks to Dada abd Senf on this glorious Easter Sunday- sorry Senf, that wasn’t very tactful, considering the spring weather where you are.

  3. Lovely jubbly. An Easter cracker. 19d was my fave- last one in, an inserted anagram, and no hint from Senf!

    Note to Margaret, and any other fellow-frustrated iPad Prize submitters – the system is back to its old tricks again with my two perfect solutions sent in last weekend, both scoring nil points!

    Thanks to Dada and Senf.

    **/**** , but with no stars for the DT techies.

    1. My iPad submissions are ok now , however , I did have typing issues recently and by deleting the DT App then restarting , everything fine again.

      1. Thanks – tried that a while ago. It’s very odd because sometimes it works, then it doesn’t. Had a theory a while ago that it failed when I submitted from abroad but that wasn’t consistent, so still at a loss to explain.

      2. Would those thping issues be that the last character typed is entered whatever one types next? If so, I first reported that a couple of years ago, but it occasionally reoccurs. It affects the other puzzles too.

        Deleting and reinstalling the app does seem to fix the problem, but of course one loses the answers to the previous puzzles.

    2. Hi HJ , for months and months now mine have shown nil correct answers for both weekend days, with only the one or two over that time getting it right.

      I forgot to check yesterday but I’ve just done it now and for both of last weekend’s puzzles I, apparently, haven’t a single correct answer.

      I’ve tried deleting and reinstalling and all the other things they’ve asked me to try, none of it works but just messes up my other settings. Oh well, I’m sorry it’s happening to you, too, but somehow makes me feel better that I’m not alone.

      PS: I’d love to know if it means our entries are not entered into the draw

      1. Hi Margaret
        Yes your final point is one which vexes me most! I did win an Amazon voucher once but it was a long time ago. Enquiries of the techies have proved fruitless.

    3. I am highly puzzled (and not just by this offering!). I always submit my Saturday and Sunday (when solved which is not often for Sunday) but I never receive a score or any indication of correct clues. What am I doing wrong apart of course from trying to solve a Dada puzzle)?

      1. Look on the solution page the following weekend, where you should see a score out of 28, 30, or however many clues there were.

  4. Another fine crossword with 3D & 8D my favourites . Went through it fairly smoothly with 4A last in which earned respect when realised .
    Thanks to everyone .

    1. I had a very similar experience today. 4a with just two vowel checkers took as much time as the rest of the puzzle and elicited major groans when the penny dropped. NW was the last bit to fall as is usual when 1a and 2d don’t come to mind easily.
      I was hoping for a nod to 3000 or a sprinkling of Easter reds but still enjoyed this.
      Thanks to Senf and Dada. Time to get outside on this nice day.

              1. Dear goodness, a whole new language to learn – think the only word I recognised on the list was ‘naff’!

  5. 1a my favourite in this fine puzzle, which went in very smoothly.

    Happy Easter to all and Happy Birthday to some.

    Many thanks Senf and Setter

  6. Reasonably benign today but I had expected at least a nod to the Easter Bunny.

    Podium places went to 1&4a for the penny-drop moments along with 5&18d for the humour.

    Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the blog. The video clip was every bit as weird as the song and the group concerned.

    PS Many Happy Returns to BD. As is true of the lady who shares your celebratory day – where would we be without you!

  7. 3*/4*. This was nicely challenging and very enjoyable on a lovely Easter Sunday.

    The NW sector gave me the most problem with several penny drop moments: 1a, my favourite, was brief and brilliant, 4a was my last one in (well, part of it is located in the NW) and 14a produced a big d’oh.

    Many thanks to Dada & Senf. Happy Easter to all and a very Happy Birthday to Her Majesty and to BD.

  8. Without any doubt for me the toughest Sunday to solve in a long time. Needed the hints and electronic help. I find these extremely tough Sundays a bit like going to the dentist, something you feel you need to do but you know it will cause great pain.
    Thx for the much needed hints/

  9. I don’t often do the sunday puzzle these days, so when i looked at it today i was delighted to find it’s puzzle no. 3000. Funny how little things can be very pleasing.

    Lovely puzzle. I liked 21a, “turn of phrase” in 22a, the mislead in 7a where i was trying XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX), 2d, the XXXXXXXXXXXX 6d, and i enjoyed 8d. I thought “In court, zero affection (4)” for 7d would also give an interesting surface.

    my last one in 25a, one of the pesky 5-letter clues with unchecked, and i should have seen it earlier. I quite liked the other three.

    Happy Birthday BD ER and many thanks Senf and Dada

    1. Hope everyone has spotted that you have an offering of your own in today’s Indy – could be just the ticket for a lazy Easter Sunday afternoon in the sunshine.

  10. Happy Easter to all from sunny Cornwall and Happy Birthday to those who celebrate including HM if she reads the blog today. Brilliant puzzle to match the weather. Not usually a great fan of the ST puzzle but no. 3000 very welcome indeed. Last two in 1 and 4a in that order with 4 taking longer than the rest put together. I’ll put 1a as the favourite with 14 and 17a and 5 and 19 d highly commended. I hope you receive this as my long message yesterday disappeared !

  11. This has to be the quickest Sunday solve ever for me. I loved 4 and 21 across, 3 down raised a chuckle, but 8 down is my COTD. Thanks Dada, a very entertaining puzzle. Thanks also to Senf, whose hints I didn’t need to refer to. Now for the GK and yesterday’s cryptic prize puzzle.

  12. Happy Easter every one and Happy Birthday BD.
    Lovely crossword but I’m stuck on 12a if anyone can throw me a lifeline within the rules. I’ve worked out what the glengarries are but it doesn’t seem to help,

    1. Thanks to both of you. I thought that was the answer but didn’t know why.
      Just coudn’t see it wandered off on all things Scottish
      Still jet lagged from my return from Oz
      That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it

  13. Very comfortable until the NW corner which took almost as long as the rest of the puzzle. 1a easily my favourite once cracked. What a brilliant crossword for a sunny Easter Sunday.

    Thanks to Dada and Senf and Happy Birthday to all those celebrating today.

  14. Brilliant crossword, though 4a did defeat me, very clever but the wordplay was a bit above my level. The rest were tough but gettable.
    Happy birthday to all concerned and thanks to BD and Dada.

  15. Enjoyable, and pretty straightforward I thought. I got but didn’t follow the wordplay for both 1ac and 4ac, so thanks for the explanations!

  16. If this was a Dada, I must really be getting on his wavelength, as I finished with just a couple of Senf’s hints. Feeling very chuffed. Had about 6 left to fill in, went away to do some last packing for the move, and amazingly all 6 answers were obvious when I sat down again. Think brain must be coming back to life now that some of the stress of preparing to move is easing. Loved 3d and 8d, my kind of clues, big thank you to Dada for this excellent puzzle, and to Senf for the hints,

    Happy Birthday to Her Majesty, Big Dave and last but not least, to my husband’s cousin Eldred 😊

  17. What a really nice crossword to solve today! As usual I was slow to get going but thereafter all came good smoothly (ish).
    4a was my personal pick of some very good clues.
    Thanks to Dada, and to Senf for the hints.

  18. Late to the party tonight , but found this very benevolent & very enjoyable.
    Thanks to Dada & Senf.

  19. Being a Dada puzzle, I’m still trying to find something other than the bleedin’ obvious for 13a. 🤔😉😆

  20. Many thanks for all the birthday greetings. I had a great day and Mrs BD bought me an item from my bucket list – a Penny Black!

  21. The powers that be have obviously edited out my comment. Felicitations nevertheless to the Birthday Boy and indeed belatedly to Her Majesty.

  22. A four-letter word to describe the reds yesterday wasn’t the one needed to solve the clue

  23. Late to the party, but a) I thought this was one of the best puzzles of late and b) I have to add my name to BD’s Birthday card, even though his other birthday is 28th Jan.

    Belated best wishes to Libellule, Eldred and Her Majesty also.

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