DT 29152 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29152

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29152

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****

Hello, everyone.  They say that good things come in threes.  Illustrating that adage to perfection, for the third week in a row we’ve been given a wonderful crossword composed by Telegraph Puzzles Editor Chris Lancaster.  It also features, in 2d, Gary Jones' winning entry in the clue-writing competition from March's Telegraph Puzzles Newsletter (sign up here to get the Newsletter for free).  Congratulations, Gary.  I enjoyed this crossword immensely.  I’m looking forward to hearing what everyone else thought of it. 

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions.  Clicking on the answer will be here buttons will reveal the answers.  In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background.  Clicking on a picture might enlarge it or display a bonus illustration.  Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Threaten close friend hiding papers (10)
INTIMIDATE:  A very close friend containing (hiding) the abbreviation for identity papers

6a    Counterfoil that's difficult to remove? Not half (4)
STUB:  One half (not half) of an adjective meaning difficult to remove or obstinate

9a    Rush to capture northern pirate (5)
FLINT:  Rush (like a small bird, perhaps) containing (to capture) the single-letter abbreviation for northern.  The pirate is from fiction

10a   Policeman circling about in court's grounds (9)
PRECINCTS:  Link together a two-letter abbreviation for a policeman containing (circling) about or concerning, IN from the clue, and the map abbreviation for court with its S from the clue

12a   Cherish floating voter that was collected by 9? (8-5)
TREASURE-TROVE:  Cherish or prize with an anagram (floating) of VOTER

14a   Changes to plan visibly embarrassed crowds (8)
REDRAFTS:  The colour one might turn when embarrassed is followed by crowds or large amounts of something

15a   Rep condemned great post-war building (6)
PREFAB:  An anagram (condemned) of REP and a dated synonym of great or awesome

17a   No d-drink? Drink! (6)
NOGGIN:  Stick together NO from the clue and a stuttering (d-d...) version of an alcoholic drink that’s flavoured with juniper berries

19a   Happy church always not quite crowded (8)
CHEERFUL:  Glue together the map abbreviation for church, a poetic form of always, and all but the last letter (not quite) of a synonym of crowded

21a   Hurry in rain, perhaps (13)
PRECIPITATION:  A double definition, the second a definition by example - rain, perhaps because the answer could also be snow or hail

24a   A boy harbours criminal since uprising (9)
ASCENSION:  A from the clue followed by a word for what a boy must be that contains (harbours) an anagram (criminal) of SINCE

25a   Abuse when one pulls out in traffic (5)
TRADE:  A synonym of abuse minus the Roman one (when one pulls out)

26a   Hiker tired somewhat over long journey (4)
TREK:  The answer is hiding as part of (… somewhat) the first two words reversed (over)

27a   Moving anecdotes about beginning to love one's young (10)
ADOLESCENT:  An anagram (moving) of ANECDOTES containing (about) the first letter of (beginning to) Love



1d    Bar opponent reportedly getting data (4)
INFO:  The answer is a homophone (… reportedly) of the fusion of bar or tavern and opponent or enemy

2d    Contaminated meat ain't edible? Just slice away outside bits! (7)
TAINTED:  The answer is found hiding in the second, third and fourth words of the clue, revealed when some outer letters of that combination are removed (… just slice away outside bits)

3d    Ham can imitate cast in summer (13)
MATHEMATICIAN:  An anagram (cast) of HAM CAN IMITATE.  In the same way that in crosswordland a flower can be something that flows and a number can be something that numbs, a summer can be something that sums.  I believe that Euler may be BD’s favourite summer

4d    Journalist brought up advances for banks (8)
DEPOSITS:  The usual abbreviated journalist is reversed (brought up, in a down clue) and followed by advances or puts forward

5d    Thrive, strangely, having lost five of them (5)
THEIR:  An anagram (strangely) of THRI[v]E without the Roman five (having lost five)

7d    Credit cancelled for carpet (4,3)
TICK OFF:  Cement together synonyms of credit and of cancelled

8d    Relax, then film dance and game (10)
BASKETBALL:  Concatenate a synonym of relax (perhaps in the warmth of the sun), a film about a cute alien, and a formal dance event

11d   Trainees timed changing tyres (13)
INTERMEDIATES:  An anagram (changing) of TRAINEES TIMED.  The answer refers to a type of tyre used, for example, in Formula 1 motor racing

13d   Change of heart? (10)
TRANSPLANT:  A cryptic definition.  Read the clue literally

16d   Change disrupted her plans (8)
SHRAPNEL:  An anagram (disrupted) of HER PLANS.  The answer is an informal word for loose coins

18d   Delight when officer enters valley (7)
GLENCOE:  Delight or joy containing the abbreviation for a non-commissioned officer (… when officer enters).  The answer is a valley in the Scottish Highlands

20d   Blast food for supporters? (7)
FANFARE:  Split (3,4) the answer could mean food for supporters

22d   Long story in Independent upset Irish parliament (5)
ILIAD:  The single letter for independent with the reversal (upset, in a down clue) of the lower chamber of the Irish parliament.  The long story is an ancient epic poem

23d   Overcome  famous footballer (4)
BEST:  A double definition.  The second is the surname of the late footballer who famously said “I spent a lot of money on booze, birds, and fast cars.  The rest I just wasted”


Thanks to today’s setters for a fun solve.  My favourite clue was 27a because of its super smooth surface.  I smiled at many others, including 17a, 1d, 16d, and 22d.  Which clues did you like best?  And what did you think about this week’s general knowledge requirements?


The Quick Crossword pun:  REIGN + BOAT + ROUT = RAINBOW TROUT

41 comments on “DT 29152

  1. This Tuesday puzzle ticked along nicely, heading for ** time, until I found myself with just 2 to go. The stubborn pair were 18d & 20d. Linked as they were by 21a, I even began to doubt my solution for that clue.

    After a break to complete the Quickie, plus a spot of breakfast, a revisit quickly had the two stragglers completed.

    I think you will find a number of ex-NCOs spluttering into their early morning brews at being called ‘officers’.


    Many thanks to CL and Mr K.

        1. Hello Edward. That’s what I thought, but I take MalcolmR’s comment to mean that they do not see themselves as such. Can anybody with relevant experience confirm that?

  2. This seemed fairly pkeasant and moderately challenging until I reaced the SE corner, which took me longer than the rest put together. I am not a motor sport fan so 11d had to be derived from the anagram alone and I was not sure enought to bung it in at first. I had never heard 16d used in a sense not referring to weapons and found 20d only after some cogitation. So, in the end, it went from ** to *** for difficulty. I liked 21a, 8d and 18d but there were so many unknowns in the SE that it did reduce enjoyment somewhat (***). Thanks to Mr K and the setter.

  3. This was an enjoyable ride with going in the North easier than in the South. 11d had to be but they’re new to me. 17a seems a bit far-fetched. Needed help to get 18d and to parse 25a. Quickie pun amused and also liked Gary Jones’ 2d clue which I select as my today Fav. Thank you CL and MrK.

  4. 3*/4*. This was nicely challenging and a lot of fun.
    There were lots of good options from which to pick a favourite and after some deliberation I’ll settle for 1d.
    Many thanks to CL and Mr K.

  5. I do enjoy CL’s puzzles and this was great (**** for enjoyment) just pushed into ** time by a couple in the SW. Many contenders for podium place such as 3d, 11d and 18d for misdirection, but I’ll make the favourite 17a for the image of a stammering drunk!

    Thanks to all.

  6. a lovely puzzle. my favourite was 18d as the wordplay had me fooled for a while into thinking the whole answer was a synonym for delight.

  7. Very enjoyable and just about right for a Tuesday back pager, especially when it is ‘twinned’ with a Dada Toughie, completed at a gallop – **/****.
    Candidates for favourite – 12a, 8d, and 13d – and the winner is 13d.
    Thanks to CL and Mr K.

  8. To my surprise after a slow start, I did manage to complete this one without aids.
    However, I needed a lot of help with parsing.

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  9. Three in a row from Mr Ed – I’m certainly not complaining but wonder whether he messed up the rota for annual leave!
    Just as well that 11d was an anagram, I had to drag that up from the basement, but no problems elsewhere.

    Podium places awarded to 6,12&17a plus 7d. Sign of a good puzzle when contributors opt for different ‘favourites’.

    Thanks to CL and also to Mr K for the blog. Those 15a’s look amazing – methinks the Bahamas could do with some right now.

  10. Not sure if 7d was a very clever clue or a very silly one…..
    When i did my officer training having been commissioned from Sergeant, the opening address from the CSM was
    “Let me get one thing straight, I call you Sir and you call me Sir, the only difference is YOU WILL MEAN IT!
    An enjoyable puzzle somewhere between 2 and 2.5 for difficulty.
    Thx to all

  11. A nice puzzle with good clues; a bit above average for a back-pager and an enjoyable solve. Fav: 27a. 3* / 4*

  12. Very enjoyable puzzle, I found it more difficult than other contributors to this blog, but some smashing clues once I’d got my head switched on. Favourites 20d and smile-inducing 2d. Thanks to Mr L and Mr K (especially for the ELP)

    1. I saw ELP live back in the 70’s, the drummer Carl Palmer, was incredible, best rock drummer I ever saw.

      1. I was lucky enough to see them in 1970 at the Isle of White Pop Festival. They were fantastic. Keith Emerson was a pretty mean keyboard player too.

  13. Nice puzzle with just a couple of clues needing the grey cells to work some. 20d was one of those and also when the proverbial penny dropped my favourite.
    Thanks to CL, and to Mr K for the review. Did I really like ELP at one time? OMG!

  14. Very enjoyable puzzle from Chris Lancaster well up to usual standard. Needed the BRB a couple of times but Thesaurus absent.
    Favourite clue 12a and 11d.
    Thanks to Mr K and of course CL

  15. Two clues threw me, 11d since amazingly I know zero about formula one racing tyres, and 16d having never heard loose coins referred to as such. Google only came up with normal bomb fragment definitions. Otherwise a pleasant puzzle.

    1. I got this from the letters but had completely forgotten the alternative meaning, although it has come up before, quite a while ago now, I think. I suppose it is ‘bits of metal’

  16. I couldn’t quite get on the right wavelength and struggled with 18d, got the glee but couldn’t do anything with it, and thought 20d was fanbase, which I thought covered supporters but couldn’t see the connection with food, no surprisingly in the circumstances. However, I did enjoy it and my favourite was 17a, which made me laugh.
    Thanks to all.

  17. I’m a CL fan but I did find this one a bit tricky, especially as I had the wrong first word for 7d, careless on my part as I know that word for credit. I couldn’t get 10a due to my error and bunged in a word-search answer which had no relevance to the clue!
    I also used an anagram solver for 11d and 16d, didn’t know both, wonder how long I’ll remember them.
    My fave was 18d, such a beautiful place, but also eerie!
    Thanks to CL and to Mr. K for helping me out with my missing answers.

  18. Quite tricky but not as much as I thought it was going to be when I first looked at it.
    4d caused a problem but only because I can’t read my own writing and thought the first letter was an “O”.
    Knowing zero about tyres I only got 11d when I had alternate letters in.
    A very enjoyable crossword with lots of good clues including 10 and 25a and 8 and 18d.
    With thanks to CL and to Mr K.
    Having just run away from the MPP I’m about to get some supper on the go and then try some of my crossword backlog.

  19. My first thought was oh oh as I only put 4 clues in on a slow first pass. It was tricky for me at my pay grade but that did not stop it being very enjoyable.
    As you would expect from CL the clues were very well crafted, so with application could eventually be cracked.
    Many thanks to CL & MrK for review & direction.

  20. A good fun puzzle for us. All the GK was stuff we knew, even the geography one as it has historical significance. (Certainly not the case for the recent Peterlee one). We guessed correctly that there would be some reaction to the wordplay for 18d too.
    A pleasant solve.
    Thanks CL and Mr K.

  21. Mr K, I’m posting this today having just competed the Tuesday crossword from a fortnight ago and I’ve been reading comments about your excellent survey. I only ever post on the Saturday full answers blog because I ‘inherit’ the newspaper from my father so am always too far behind to comment on the day. So I hope you read this! I love the blogs, always read every comment on every one, I feel part of the community even though I’m not. I don’t care how hard or easy other people find the puzzles, my satisfaction is in doing them myself and admiring the sheer inventiveness of the setters – and the dedication of the bloggers, of course. I use occasional aids, more often for toughies though. If I’ve spent more than a couple of hours on a puzzle, then I give up and come here!

    1. Hi, molly! It’s good to hear from you, and thanks for your kind words and for sharing your thoughts on the puzzle. It’s really never too late to post a comment here – the blogger (me in this case) and everyone who has signed up for email announcements or has an RSS feed will get immediate notification. And all new comments are announced in the Recent Comments sidebar. There was a post a couple of days ago on one of my April blogs that I enjoyed, so being two weeks behind publication is nothing.

      p.s. You’ve made some memorable comments here. You are definitely part of the community.

  22. A tough one for me, gone into the second day, so very pleased and proud to complete without hints. I knew the F1 tyres, but doubt most solvers would.
    ****/***. Thanks to setter and to Mr K.

  23. Most of it went straight in starting with 1a and I worked systematically through it. Some great clues. Sadly missed out on 1* time went I went down south. Needed the hint (thanks Mr K) for 23d. Good only think of Pele. Had no trouble with 16 and 20d which were straight in but struggled with 17 and 27 across and 18 and 22d. Thanks Ed.

  24. Sorry to go against the flow of opinion, but I didn’t enjoy this one much at all – unlike last week’s which was delightful. I thought it somehow lacked sparkle. Perhaps I’m just having an off day!

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