ST 3051 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

ST 3051

Sunday Telegraph Cryptic No 3051

Hints and tips by Senf

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***/****Enjoyment ****

Until the Telegraph resumes the award of prizes for the Weekend puzzles, this post, and all other Weekend posts, will be just like the Monday to Friday posts, with hints for every clue and revealable answers. BD

A very good Sunday morning from Winnipeg, where we are having a chilly Easter weekend with maximum temperatures a few degrees either side of zero but, unless Hell has frozen over, I think we are surviving.

Keep staying safe everyone. 

Dada quirky again this week – I lost count of the number of anagrams (but several of them were partials), one reversed lurker, and no homophones but lots of containments/insertions – all in a symmetric 28 clues.

Candidates for favourite – 1a, 15a, 5d, 16d, and 18d.

In the hints below, the definitions are underlined. The answers are hidden under the ANSWER buttons, so don’t click if you don’t want to see them.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a Unspectacular flag on marsh (3-8)
BOG STANDARD: A type of flag, such as HM has, placed after (on) a three letter type of marsh.

9a Language in foreign glen I don’t speak! (7)
ENGLISH: An anagram (foreign) of GLEN I followed by a two letter interjection for don’t speak.

10a Turn one’s nose up at garbage (6)
REFUSE: A double definition – the second is a simple synonym.

12a North African city, more spicy (7)
TANGIER: A single word for more spicy becomes a city in Morocco.

13a Pine front for yew weapon? (7)
LONGBOW: A synonym of pine (as in wanting) and the front of a ship.

14a Raise head on effectively having missed alarm call? (5)
ELATE: The initial letter (head on) of Effectively and a single word descriptive term for having missed alarm call.

15a Worry about garden party, hosting one where grounds will be soaked? (9)
CAFETIÈRE: A synonym of worry containing (about) a type of garden party containing (hosting) the single letter used for one.

17a Sailor accepting work, figure a good wage? (3,6)
TOP DOLLAR: The three letter term for a sailor containing (accepting) the abbreviated form of a musical work and a synonym of figure (as in a type of toy?) – I consider that this is an unindicated Americanism but could not confirm that.

20a Upset — and in pieces? (3,2)
CUT UP: A double definition – the second might be the result of using a knife, or similar, on a single item.

22a Reasonable plate of slime? (7)
GOODISH: A three letter synonym of slime and a synonym of plate.

24a Cooker isn’t switched on (7)
AGAINST: The three letter type of cooker and an anagram (switched) of ISN’T.

25a Feeling resentment, drink (6)
BITTER: A(nother) double definition – the second is alcoholic.

26a Wrong I can’t put right, accommodating old lover (7)
INEXACT: An anagram (put right) of I CAN’T containing (accommodating) the usual two letter term for old lover.

27a Cooking ingredient, gluey drops plastered round end of spoon? (6,5)
GOLDEN SYRUP: An anagram (plastered) of GLUEY DROPS containing (round) the last letter (end) of spooN.


2d Opening provided to invest in gold and diamonds (7)
ORIFICE: The two letter synonym of provided inserted into (to invest in) a two letter term for gold (not the chemical symbol) and the slang term for diamonds.

3d Round leader in parliament, Charles I scattered guards (9)
SPHERICAL: An anagram (scattered) of CHARLES I contains (guards) the first letter (leader in) of Parliament.

4d Just over four weeks: a male finally out of danger (5)
APRIL: A from the clue, and a synonym of danger with the last letter (finally) of malE removed (out).

5d Dead skilful cushioning punch internally (7)
DEFUNCT: A synonym of skilful containing (cushioning) the internal letters of pUNCh.

6d Ridiculous bug has overwhelmed relative (7)
RISIBLE: A synonym of bug (as in annoy) containing (has overwhelmed) a three letter synonym of relative (and it’s not an abbreviation).

7d Focus of interest US money, balance required on time (6,5)
CENTRE STAGE: A US coin (also a coin in other countries), a single word for balance required (or remaining), and a synonym of time.

8d Kept up by bonehead, negative plan (6)
AGENDA: The reversed lurker (kept up by) found in two words in the clue.

11d Top taste, we suspect, with old vegetable (5,6)
SWEET POTATO: An anagram (suspect) of TOP TASTE, WE and (with) the single letter for Old.

16d Number embracing country ceremony (9)
FORMALITY: A number (which is a multiple of ten) containing (embracing) a four letter (African) country.

18d Clause for and against one, thus (7)
PROVISO: The three letter synonym of for, the single letter used to indicate against (in a contest), the single letter for one, and a synonym of thus.

19d Time to put out dog, originally neglected (7)
OMITTED: An anagram (put out) of TIME TO and the first letter (originally) of Dog.

20d Given copper plating, detest a castle (7)
CHATEAU: A synonym of detest and A from the clue all contained by (given . . . plating) of the chemical symbol for copper.

21d Protection for head which has squeezed in (3,3)
TIN HAT: An alternative to which containing (has squeezed) IN from the clue.

23d Some time without love on North American lake (5)
HURON: A period of time with the single letter used for love in a tennis score removed (without) followed by ON from the clue.

Could new readers please read the Welcome post and the FAQ before posting comments or asking questions about the site.

A bit of a ‘one hit wonder,’ Unit 4 + 2 were just over half way through their only week at number one on this day in 1965:


57 comments on “ST 3051

  1. My quickest Dada solve ever. No idea why?
    Getting the first 5 across clues straight away was a huge fillip.
    Happy Easter everyone, strange times, let’s hope it does not last for too long. Stay safe.
    Thanks Dada and Senf.

      1. Odd business this crossword lark, last Sunday was like swimming in treacle.
        Love the book btw, but then again I love Dickens. I live in Dickens country, just down the road is the churchyard that he used as the inspiration for the opening few pages of Great Expectations. All the houses are named Havisham Villa, Jaggers House, etc.
        Jools Holland lives there too.

        1. Just the mention of Dickens brightens my day, HYD. I toured many CD landmarks in my many trips (and one long sojourn) over there. May I ask where you live, if I’m not being too snoopy? With all the GE-named sites and buildings near you, I think I know about where you live. My latest re-read was Our Mutual Friend, but Bleak House remains the crème de la crème, I think. (I hope there’s a pub named ‘What larks, eh Pip!’ near you.)

          1. I live in High Halstow on the Hoo Peninsula. The village in question is the village of Cooling. The hulks where Magwitch escaped from used to be anchored in the Thames estuary just a couple of miles inland from Cooling. The church contains small child graves like the ones described in the book.
            I would get a bollocking from Kath if I named a favourite Dickens novel because they are all my favourite, but I will pick one, Bleak House.
            IMHO no one has ever come close to being able to write prose like him.

            1. My fave is still Great Expectations. What a superb name, Magwitch. I have an audiobook of GE, read by – damn, can’t remember his name (it happens) that is so good, I’ve listened to it a couple of times, and now the eyes are getting dodgy I think I may do so again.

              1. Mine is Our Mutual Friend. The opening chapter with the realisation of the trade of the boatman and his daughter is brilliant. And the rest of the book does not disappoint.

                1. Corky, et al: Thanks for joining today’s Dickensfest! When I finish my latest Ann Cleeves mystery (thanks to one of the commentariat who recommended it; sorry I can’t recall just who), I think I’ll choose one of the biggest CD novels–maybe NN or LD, which I recently re-read, or D&S–to while the long time away. When I was in my early 20s, as a college instructor, the first CD I ever taught was Hard Times to an American class of even younger kids. You can imagine what a fast education it was for all of us–so little did we know. And speaking of ‘hard times’….!

        2. Aha! I was close. Haven’t been on the Coo Peninsula, but I just found High Halstow on Google Maps. My first night ever in the UK–having crossed the Channel from Calais–was spent at a delightful inn/pub in Chatham–not too far from where you live. Sorry I never made it to Cooling. Thanks for the pleasure of the chat today.

  2. A really absorbing crossword and quite challenging (***/****). I rally enjoyed it. There were lots of wily clues with cunning misdirection. I liked 15a, 24a and 23d. I did groan softly at 22a. Tha ks to Senf for helping me parse my bung-in, 4d and to Dada. Happy Easter everyone and stay safe.

  3. Took a little while today but got there in the end. Not come across the meaning in 14a before. Thanks to setter for a tricky and absorbing Sunday morning. Favourite was 25a as it reminds what I’m missing from the pub across the road.

  4. Very slow start but then flowed to finishing quickly . Favourites 1A and 22A .
    Very enjoyable .
    Looks like shorts weather in South Wales is finishing today .
    Thanks Dada and Senf .

  5. For some reason I made heavy weather of this and I can’t really see why now. Bottom left corner was the last to hold out and I laughed when the penny dropped on 22a so that’s my favourite.

    I enjoyed it so thanks to Dada and thanks, as always to Senf.

    Happy Easter and stay safe everyone.

  6. About as benevolent as you’re likely to get from Dada but a typically enjoyable & well clued offering nonetheless. Most unusually for me I managed to parse the lot (though not necessarily before bunging in the answer) and completed in a shade under 2.5*. Plenty of contenders for podium places of which my picks would be 5d, 15a & 16d. Many thanks to Dada & to Senf for his informative review.
    The weather is absolutely gorgeous this morning and it’s most frustrating to be stuck at home waiting to enjoy your once daily walking excursion – strikes me that it’s a bit like knowing that there’s a nice bottle of whatever just waiting to be sampled but it’s really a little too early in the day……..

    1. It’s never too early and you can never have too much only nearly enough

  7. An enjoyable friendly Dada for this wonderfully hot sunny Easter Sunday. Lovely walk – the skylarks get happier every day.

    If I didn’t know how far in advance crosswords are set (and tested ;) ) before publication, you’d wonder whether 4d was referring to Boris

    Thanks to Dada and Senf

  8. 3*/4*….
    liked 15A ” worry about garden party, hosting one where grounds will be soaked ? (9) ”
    never thought about Boris re 4D !

  9. That was HARD! However, after a double visit I have completed it but really need the hints to explain some of the complex wordplay.
    Really liked 15a but really disliked 24a which I thought a very stretched synonym.
    DADA is never easy and on the whole too difficult to enjoy but at least I finished this one.
    Thx for the hints

  10. 4*/4*. I agree with Brian (for once) that this was tough but I disagree with him about the enjoyment level. I thought it was good fun. The NE corner took me as long as the other three quarters added together.

    I didn’t know that “sib” was a real word until I checked my BRB.

    1a was my favourite with special mentions for 5d (my last one in) & 15a.

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf.

    1. We agree with RD & B – “great minds think alike”. We are particularly impressed that we figured out 1a since it sounds like one of your weird English idioms about your lavatories…

      As always, Grateful Dead Fans

      Mr & Mrs T
      Boston (not Lincs)

      1. “Point Percy at the Porcelain” perhaps.
        I also remember towel rolls which you yanked down to provide a relatively new bit of towel to dry your hands on.
        (I think they have largely been replaced by those useless hand dryers that breathe luke warm air and fail to dry hands at all.) They were called Advance Towelmasters and it was mandatory to respond;
        Advance Towelmaster and be Recognised.

        Mr Bee
        formerly of Boston Spa (Yorkshire – Twixt Wetherby and Tadcaster)

  11. I did have a couple of ‘well, I suppose so’ moments over 14&22a but overall I enjoyed solving this one.
    Top marks went to 15&27a with a mention for 1a just because it made me laugh.

    Thanks to Dada and to Senf who, yet again, had to solve the entire puzzle! The Concrete & Clay earworm will be with me for the rest of the day – but it is quite a catchy tune.

  12. At first glance, I thought this was going to be really difficult. A cup of strong coffee woke me up well enough to decipher the clues. Favourite 15a. Very enjoyable.

  13. I was nearer Brian’s experience rather than Hoofit but still enjoyed the struggle a la RD. I too checked BRB and Sib isn’t in the online version but I was in little doubt as to the clue’s answer. Thanks to Dada and Senf.
    Today for the first time in ages I have got a little bag of giblets in my chicken so I will be working on my chicken gravy.

    1. Hi John,
      Good thing you looked.
      I remember putting one in the oven, not knowing that the offal were inside. A real disaster when the plastic melted.
      So used to the PAC ( prête à cuire) variety.

      1. Gravy (Jus?) was excellent. Shame the chicken wasn’t one of the rather delicious poulet de Bresse.
        I haven’t seen giblets in supermarket chicken for many moons. we are probably going to end up with American chlorinated chicken before long

    2. I thought bags of giblets had been abolished. I always used to make gravy with them (having taken them out of the plastic bag)! Not seen any in a Chechen for years

  14. I found this quite hard but it is a Dada puzzle and I do struggle with them. Got there in the end with help from the hints. I liked the partial anagram at 9a and I also liked 17a.

    Many thanks to Dada and to Senf for the helpful hints.

    Happy Easter, everyone or, as they say in Greece, “Christos Anesti!”

  15. I too found this tough, and had to use one of the hints to get the SW corner finished. All done in ****/***** time.

    Didn’t know the three lettered relative in 6d.

    Many thanks to Dada and Senf.

  16. 14a held me up forever; it just seemed too clunky (so unlike Dada) for anything to be ‘defined’, but beyond that, a really original and challenging puzzle. 1a is delightfully British (and quite foreign to bland American ears, though I did know the term). Probably the toughest Dada I’ve attempted, and after two passes, I’d solved only six. Returning later, I slowly got there but I really didn’t enjoy it much. Standouts: 15a, 26a, 18d. Thanks Send and Dada. **** / ** A cool, sunny Easter in Charleston, with big storms on the way–just what we don’t need!–but good wishes to all for your safety and good health.

    1. That weather system seems particularly horrid, looks like a number of tornados moving in sync across the land. Keep safe.

  17. A thoroughly good workout from Dada today, a real challenge. It took me a couple of goes to finish it but it was well worth the effort. I really liked 20d, 1a and my favourite 15a. The Met Office are warming of thunderstorms this afternoon but I suspect it is them crying wolf just in case. Doesn’t feel nearly heavy enough in the atmosphere for thunder.

    Thanks very much to Dada for the tussle and to Senf.

    1. No, not crying wolf. Had just finished texting various members of the family to say we were sunbathing in the garden
      where it was almost too hot, when the sky came over grey and we had thunder and much needed rain. Think it is blowing over now.

  18. Pleasant enough but nothing to write home about. West came first. Don’t really like 22a or 6d but doubtless they are both in BRB. Needed help to parse 23d bung-in. Joint Favs 15a and 27a plus an honourably mentioned 4d when the penny dropped. Thank you Dada and Senf. Welcome back Boris and all the best for a full recovery.

  19. Oh dear, don’t for the life of me know why, but I really didn’t enjoy this one. Crept into 2* time for difficulty but I’d be hard pushed to give it that many for happiness quotient. Perhaps isolation is increasing my grumpy-old-man-ness (difficult, some may aver, impossible according to most). Nevertheless, thanks to both of you.

  20. Another quirky delight from Dada, which had a few clues that absolutely misdirected me.
    Thanks to Dada & Senf for review.
    Best wishes & stay safe to all

  21. Oh dear! :phew:
    I enjoyed that but found it really difficult and it’s taken a very long time.
    I ended up with several in the bottom left corner that I just couldn’t see – they weren’t even the most tricky ones – just me being dim.
    17a was a bit of a guess and was my last one – I’ve never heard of it and it’s not in the BRB.
    Almost too many good clues to pick from but they included 1 and 15a and 5 and 18d. My favourite was 22a because it made my laugh – I’m a sucker for anything ending ‘ish’.
    Thanks to Dada and to Senf.

  22. Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the review and hints. I enjoyed what I could do, but I just couldn’t get my head round this. Needed the hints for 1,10,14,17,27a and 3&5d. Also needed the hints to parse 9a, 6,7,8,19d. I felt like a beginner again. Couldn’t even solve the anagrams in 27a and 3d. Was 5*/2* for me.

  23. What a great weekend for crosswords.
    And to finish with a Dada is the cherry on the cake as we say in France.
    Too many good clues to pick a favourite.
    Thanks to Dada and to Senf for the full review.

  24. Just got sidetracked by a video call with my grandsons. I enjoyed the workout but was stuck on 6d, did a bung in but could not
    think of sib so thanks for the parsing of that. I didn’t like 17 across, but loved 15a and 27a. Happy Easter to everyone, just off
    to baste the Pascal Lamb. Stay safe – stay home

  25. I’m in the too tough camp and needed hints for too many.
    I have never heard of 1a, it sounds slightly off-colour to me, don’t know why, pretty awful word.
    Of the ones I could solve, 15a was fave, 22a came in second as it’s such a ridiculous word.
    Hopefully I’m not sounding negative, I had so much fun yesterday, that’ll last me for some time.
    Thanks to Dada and to Senf, it’s so nice to have a bolt hole when you get completely stuck.
    Happy Easter everyone, and stay safe!

  26. Took quite a time and needed three hints from Senf. Getting better with Dada’s puzzles and hope this will continue. Liked 1 and 24 across. Many thanks to Senf and Dada for an enjoyable Easter Day solve.

  27. Too hard for me today, and taking too much time, when I have an urgent jigsaw waiting for me … 🙂

    Thanks to Dada and Senf, but when I need more than a few hints, it is time to throw in the towel.

    Re aforementioned jigsaw, it was a Christmas present bought by elder daughter on line from M&S which is proving exceptionally difficult, although only 500 pieces. Firstly, the picture on the box is only partial, the entire edge of the puzzle is not displayed, and the M&S banner is covering a good portion of the top right hand corner. Already found one duplicate piece. Sigh. But I am not going to let it beat me.

  28. Enjoyed this generally but 14a makes no sense to us: how can the solution possibly mean raise? Thanks to Senf for the hint which helped us finish: Dada has always been a bit too clever for us. Bleak House definitely the best Dickens novel, and Villette the best Bronte! 🙂

  29. Why does BD now give the answer as well as a clue for Sat & Sun? Kind of takes the challenge away- even if you don’t have to look!

    1. Welcome to the blog.
      To expand on the short statement at the top of the blog – the DT puzzle office is ‘closed’ while the impact of Covid19 is considered severe enough. Obviously, puzzles are still being published by staff working from home. As a result the DT is not awarding prizes for the weekend puzzles. Consequently BD decided that the blog would treat the puzzles in the same way as a weekday puzzle – a hint for every clue and concealed answers. When the DT resumes awarding prizes, the blog will return to hints on half the clues and no concealed answers for the weekend puzzles.

Comments are closed.