NTSPP – 492 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 492

NTSPP – 492

Moon Landing by Windsurfer

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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.

The first manned lunar landing took place fifty years ago today on 20th July 1969 and the first men walked on the surface of the moon early on 21st July 1969. 

Windsurfer provides an NTSSP with a 50th Anniversary theme


4a Flyer‘s way to block schedule after retirement (7)
AVIATOR A preposition meaning by way of to ‘block’ a reversal (after retirement) of a schedule

6a Album – regularly managed retrospective pertaining to ‘The Dark Side of the Moon’ (5)
LUNAR The even or regular letters of aLbUm followed by a reversal (retrospective) of a verb meaning managed

9a Drone pilot (4)
BUZZ Double definition, the second one theme-related as the person in question was a pilot before they ‘moved higher’

10a Triumphant Collins initially cusses – fuel surprisingly not providing impulse at the end (10)
SUCCESSFUL An anagram (surprisingly) of C (Collins initially) CUSSES and FUeL , ‘not providing impulse at the end’ telling you not to use the E in fuel

11a Large stumble or the converse in examination (6)
TRIPOS ‘the converse’ tells you to put the two-letter abbreviation meaning large sized after the stumble

13a Criminal returning to stay before party with the Queen (8)
EVILDOER A reversal (returning) of a verb meaning to stay goes before a party and the regnal cipher of our current Queen

14a Maybe butterfly, or a parrot close to cockatoo (6)
APOLLO A (from the clue), a possible name for a parrot and the letter that is the ‘close’ to cockatoo

16a Still following the Spanish cardinal after 10? (6)
ELEVEN A synonym for still follows the Spanish definite article

19a American university posh for middle of God’s country (8)
COLUMBIA Take a South American country and change the O (middle of God) for the letter used to indicate posh

21a Unit revealing second fight broadcast (6)
MODULE An abbreviation for a short period of time (second) followed by a homophone (broadcast) of a fight with swords or pistols

22a Something for those in need of sun – Icelandic resorts not nice (6,4)
SOCIAL FUND An anagram (resorts) of OF SUN ICELANDiC – not NICE indicates the need to leave those letters out of the anagram

23a 4 in crooked line (4)
NEIL An anagram (crooked) of LINE

24a Winger that’s under par (5)
EAGLE A golf score that is two shots under par

25a Not kindly but saintly when corrected (7)
NASTILY An anagram (when corrected) of SAINTLY


1d Bubbly fellow’s nap after scratching the head (4)
FIZZ The abbreviation for Fellow and an informal term for a short nap without its first letter (scratching the head)

2d Short sibling rested upside down inside to provide equilibrium (6)
STASIS An abbreviated female sibling with a reversal (upside down) of a verb meaning rested inserted (inside)

3d American diver depressed by charges (8)
BLUEBILL A colour used to indicate depressed followed by a statement of charges

4d Where to show off mullet as captured in song (7)
AQUARIA A three-letter originally Latin term meaning as inserted into (captured) a song

5d Note king meets revolutionary for reprimand (6)
ROCKET A musical note and the abbreviation for King in a chess game are added to (meets) an informal interjection meaning my, the result should then be reversed (upset in a Down clue)

7d Sodden, I’ve stumbled and suddenly got worse (9)
NOSEDIVED An anagram (stumbled) of SODDEN IVE

8d Wake up or exploit (5)
ROUSE A reversal (up) of OR (in the clue) followed by a verb meaning to exploit

12d Making gin cocktail after prick starts to unbutton collar (9)
PRODUCING An anagram (cocktail) of GIN goes after a way of poke with a sharp object (prick) and the starts to Unbutton and Collar

15d Siren embraced by one in bed is an abuser
LIBELLER Something that signals alarm (siren) ’embraced’ by one in bed

17d Greek character providing play ultimately accepts lines to repeal (7)
NULLIFY A Greek letter, a word meaning providing and the ultimate letter of play ‘accept’ L L (lines)

18d God‘s son getting an illness perhaps (6)
SATURN The abbreviation for Son and a way of saying being affected by giddiness or nausea (an illness perhaps)

20d Individual from Australia possibly producing gas (5)
OZONE A slang term for Australia and an individual

21d Two ways to meet in fair (6)
MODEST Two ways – one a way of doing something and the other an abbreviated way or road

23d The best recipe for a type of movie (4)
NOIR Split this type of movie 3, 1 and you’d get a way of saying the best followed by the abbreviation for recipe


19 comments on “NTSPP – 492

  1. How could the topic have been anything else – we have seen them in the IQ, The Listener and the Magpie and probably tomorrow’s EV too. I liked the big bird. Thanks to Windsurfer.

    1. Thanks Chalicea; if you look in today’s Independent you’ll find a different theme.

  2. This was a curate’s egg puzzle for me, both in terms of difficulty and enjoyment. Several of the clues were a bit tortuous for my taste leading to some iffy surfaces.

    I don’t get the logic in 19a which seems to me to imply that the university is the starting point and country is the definitiion, i.e. the opposite of what is needed.

    I preferred the shorter clues with 9a, 24a, 8d & 23d battling for podium positions.

    Thanks to Windsurfer and in advance to CS for the review.

    1. Thanks RD; I think the ‘posh for middle of God’ gives the required answer, no?

      1. Thanks for your reply, Windsurfer.

        My reading of the clue is to start with the university, replace the U (posh) with (for) an O (middle of God) and finish with the country on the basis WORDPLAY is (‘s) DEFINITION.

        Without the is (‘s) you could intrepret it either way, but that of course would create a meaningless surface.

  3. Super crossword – thanks Windsurfer. It was very impressive to get all those theme words in (and I’m not sure I’ve found them all yet).
    The clues that gave me a buzz were 19a, 4d and 23d.

    1. Thanks Gazza; I think there are eleven themed entries unless I’ve added another by mistake.

      1. I found 11 definite themed answers but I was undecided whether or not 2d might also be relevant.

      2. … in which case I have found them all. I wondered whether starting the column 8 combination at clue FIVE was deliberate or accidental.

  4. I’m with RD, a curate’s egg – perhaps the result of going for a theme for which I have found 12 appropriate answers, but I may not have found them all or, perhaps, I have found too many.
    Favourite – 24a (I’m not sure there are many of those at Royal Portrush this weekend).
    Thanks Windsurfer.

  5. I share RD’s reservations but it was good to have a puzzle on the BD site which celebrated that incredible feat. Watching it again on TV this week, I’m not at all surprised that all three of those men decided never to take part in another space mission!

    The drone pilot was my favourite themed clue with the unrelated 23d taking second place.
    Thank you, Windsurfer.

  6. Thanks for the puzzle windsurfer, enjoyed that. A couple of clues that only just work, but that’s fine by me.

  7. I enjoyed this, although of course the theme made some clues a lot easier than they otherwise might have been. My last one was 4d, also my favorite. I’m glad that Gaza found the “five”, too.

  8. Many thanks for the review, CS. A question, if I may – I thought that the Latin word for ‘as’ was ‘quod’ so how do we arrive at ‘qua’?

    1. My Latin knowledge all comes from crosswords but the BRB says ‘in the capacity of’ which I presume could equate to ‘as’

  9. Many thanks to all the people who commented and to Sue for a super, pictorial blog.

    For ‘qua’ Collins has: ‘in the function, character, or capacity of; as’

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