DT 29387 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 29387


Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29387

Hints and tips by Kath

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating — Difficulty **/***Enjoyment ****

Hello everyone. I hope you’re all OK and not getting too fed-up/grumpy/cooped-up (please delete as appropriate). Anyway, on to the crossword now – that is, after all, what we’re here for. I’m sure this is a Ray T production and I thought it was about average, or maybe a bit less, in terms of difficulty for one of his.

In the hints the definitions are underlined and the answers are hidden under ANSWER so only do that if you need to see one.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on today.


1a        Rub along, even becoming difficult (12)
UNGOVERNABLE — an anagram (becoming) of RUB ALONG EVEN – a nice long anagram across the top is always so good for the morale specially when you get it quickly –  I didn’t

9a        Stress is negligible taking cannabis (9)
SPOTLIGHT — another word for negligible or insignificant going round (taking) one of the many slang words for cannabis

10a       Trunk ultimately cut roughly (5)
TORSO — the last letter (ultimately) of cuT is followed by another way of saying roughly or approximately – you need to split it 2, 2

11a       Very old can start to guide election (6)
VOTING — the abbreviations for V[ery] and O[ld] and another word for a can are followed by the first letter (start to) of G[uide]

12a       Permit secretary’s physical activity (8)
PASSPORTpermit here is a noun and you probably won’t be needing one any time soon – start off with two letters for a secretary, with the ‘S, and follow them with some physical activity or a game of some kind

13a       Perhaps make short detectives dig endlessly? (6)
DISTIL — the abbreviation for some fairly senior detectives is followed by three of a four letter word (endlessly) meaning dig or cultivate a piece of ground

15a       Pick fruit with each tart oddly filling (8)
PLECTRUM — some stoned fruit contains (filling) the alternate letters (oddly) of the fourth and fifth words in the clue

18a       Artist raves, typically about caricature (8)
TRAVESTY —  the first lurker, or hidden answer of the day which is indicated by about – my bete noire – I always miss them

19a       Sacked left-winger receiving support (6)
RAIDED — this kind of ‘sacked’ isn’t fired – it’s plundered or destroyed – you need a left-winger or socialist which contains (receiving) another word for support or assistance

21a       Intensify and be louder in a frenzy (8)
REDOUBLE — an anagram (in a frenzy) of BE LOUDER

23a       Female consumed by a fine romance (6)
AFFAIR — the one letter abbreviation for F[emale] is contained in (consumed by] the A from the clue and a synonym for fine or reasonable

26a       Bouquet thrown outside front of church (5)
SCENT — another word for thrown or propelled containing the first letter (front) of C[hurch]

27a       Designated facility rejected housing small retailer? (9)
TRADESMAN — begin with a synonym for designated or termed, then think of another word for facility or skill,  stick the abbreviation for S[mall] in the middle (housing) reverse the whole lot (rejected) and Bob’s your uncle! Phew! The answer had to be what it was but untangling it all took a while.

28a       Performing ‘Carmen’, tenor’s showing grievance (12)
REMONSTRANCE — an anagram (performing) of ‘CARMEN’ TENOR’S



1d        Turned vase with nude almost lost (7)
UNSAVED — an anagram (turned) of VASE and NUD[e] (nude almost, or without its last letter)

2d        Greatest of all time secures large triumph (5)
GLOAT — a fairly recent acronym for G[reatest] O[f] A[ll] T[ime], used of top sportsmen, is GOAT which sounds a bit rude to me but anyway . . . all you need to do is put the one letter abbreviation for L[arge] into that. I’d never heard of the acronym and it’s not in my BRB which is, admittedly very old. Thanks very much, Gazza

3d        Sweetheart proud about fast time with sweetheart (9)
VALENTINE — another word for proud or conceited contains (about) a ‘fast time’, or a time of fasting which comes just before Easter – then finish it off with the middle letter or heart of swEet


4d        Madness of King over time (4)
RAGE — the one letter Latin abbreviation for King (or Queen) is followed by a time or era

5d        Turn on United supporter as it happens (8)
ACTUALLY — begin with a turn or a performance of some kind, then the abbreviation for U[nited} and finish off with a supporter or an associate

6d        Car plant (5)
LOTUS — a double definition – I can’t ‘do’ cars so here’s a picture of the plant

7d        Reinforced resistance in French love of revolutionary (8)
ARMOURED — the French word for ‘love’ and a reversal (revolutionary) of the French word for ‘of’ contain (in) the one letter abbreviation for R[esistance  Thanks again to Gazza – I got into a muddle with the ending and he spotted it before the rest of you had a chance to see it! 

8d        Behind on the wagon in crash (6)
BOTTOM — a loud noise or crash contains (in) the two letters that mean on the wagon or abstaining from drinkin alcohol

14d      Liverish, and I eschew swallowing drinks (8)
SHANDIES — the second lurker or hidden answer indicated by swallowing

16d      Joke about uniform on Parisian street upset driver (9)
CHAUFFEUR — a verb to joke or make fun of contains the one letter abbreviation for U[niform] and then you need a reversal (upset) of the French (Parisian) word for street

17d      Knife fight pinching cash box, practically (8)
STILETTO — a fight or bicker (3,2) contains (pinching) three of a four letter word (practically) for a cash box or container for money

18d      Put forward awkward truths (6)
THRUST — an anagram (awkward) of TRUTHS

20d      Insanely angered, leading to anger (7)
DERANGE — an anagram (insanely) of ANGERED

22d      Beeb, lacking leader, is free (5)
 UNTIE — the affectionate name for the BBC (Beeb) without its first letter (lacking leader)

24d      Male embraced by a male? Capital! (5)
AMMAN — the one letter abbreviation for M[ale] is contained in (embraced by) the A from the clue and an adult male

25d      Starts to gossip and blather senselessly (4)
GABS — the first letters (starts to) of the last four words of the clue

I particularly appreciated 13 and 26a and 8, 16 and 24d. My favourite is one of those!

The Quickie pun:- WEIRDO + SPEAK = WIDOW’S PEAK  


145 comments on “DT 29387

  1. Completed without help for the second day on the run. I thought I was going to have to use electronics for the longer anagrams, but some doodling in the margins got me the answers.

    I couldn’t quite parse 13a (Why the ‘Perhaps’?, it works without it); didn’t know the word at 28a, (but made it up from the fodder and checkers), didn’t know the acronym in 2d ( not in my fairly new BRB) or the joke in 16d. But apart from those . . . . .

    It took me a full ****, but I got there in the end. COTD and last one in, was 27a.

    Many thanks to Ray T and Kath

    1. You’ve changed your alias so this comment required moderation. Both aliases should work from now on.

  2. This was right up my street, I thought it was outstanding, a real pleasure to solve.
    Hard to pick a podium from such a strong field but I’ll go for 15a plus 7d (I wondered how you’d get on with that one Kath!)…. and 3d, a quintessential Ray T clue.
    Many thanks to Mr T and to Kath for the great entertainment.

  3. Some tricky cluing today , very enjoyable with no obscurities and a pleasure to solve, going for a a **/****.
    Liked 15a which led me nicely down the garden path, last in 27a which took a while to parse, and the well concealed 18a.
    The joke in 16a was a new synonym for me unless I’ve simply forgotten it.
    Thanks to setter and Kath for the pics

  4. We are being spoilt rotten so far this week with some real quality backpagers and this was no exception. Thoroughly enjoyable and just about the right amount of difficulty to make it challenging. 9a was my favourite for its concise clueing.

    Thanks to Ray T and to Kath.

  5. 2.5*/4*. Great fun from the master of brevity, even though Her Majesty has been given the day off. I was heading for a 2* time but got held up slightly in the SW corner.

    My favourite was 24d closely followed by 8d.

    Many thanks to RayT and to Kath. Where did you find that photo of me for 10a?

      1. Thanks – sorted! It’s beginning to feel like one of those days when I’m diving in and out to edit stuff all the time. I blame the ‘resident inmates’ who don’t quite understand, “Either get out or shut up – I’m doing something and need to concentrate”!

        1. Don’t knock having inmates Kath. I’m looking forward to seeing mine on Monday when I will probably be justified in saying “My, haven’t you grown!”

          1. I’m really not knocking them but . . . as my Dad would have said, “you can have too much of a good thing”!

            1. Not beer though Kath. You can’t have too much beer, only nearly enough.

              1. Of course there can never be too much beer. It makes everything beautiful. After all, beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.

                1. Not that I’m bothered as I can’t stand the stuff, but did you see that there’s a shortage of Marmite as the brewers aren’t brewing so isn’t any brewer’s yeast. I haven’t told Mr CS as he loves the horrible spread!

                  1. Yes, I did hear that. There will soon be loads of it on a famous online auction site at greatly inflated prices.

                  2. I have two 250g jars in reserve but, on reading the news, ordered another which is showing as available. If it turns up we should be able to withstand the famine.

                  3. See DT this morning they have stopped production of all sizes except 250gram jar

                    1. Yes I saw that so added a jar to my Waitrose order due for delivery tomorrow! ⚾️

                  4. I was just told that and I’ve gone into a steep decline! I’m in such shock, I feel totally useless. I’m halfway through my 600g tub, but I did order another tub a month ago which won’t be delivered until July. Shock, horror, how much more can a girl take?? Bah, humbug! C’mon you Brits, get out and get drinking again!

    1. She needed a day off as she has a headache after celebrating Prince Philip’s 99th yesterday.

      1. Shame that the media didn’t give that more attention. Would much rather have seen more on this event that on the depressing protests, riots, schools, Covid etc.

  6. Quite tricky, particularly in the NE corner, which held me up a bit (3*/4*). I loved the longer anagrams, together with 3d and 15a and there were lots of other clever clues to lift the spiritsin this enjoyable puzzle. Thank you Kath for the excellent explanation of how to parse 27a, which I bunged in. Thanks to the setter, I enjoyed the clever misdirection . Keep safe and well everyone.

  7. The most enjoyable Ray T in some time for me. All of his trademarks seem to be there. For one thing, the lurkers were nicely disguised and the Queen is there–in clues of 8 words or fewer. Many contenders for the podium and hard to choose just three, but here goes: 7d, 9a. and 3d, with special mention to 13a, my LOI. Thanks to Kath for her nice review, as always, and many thanks to Ray T for the pleasure. ** / **** (The toughie is quite doable and quite witty, with one of the Bard’s great oaths present; I suspect that the puzzle might be called a floughie by some, though.)

    1. Oops, apologies to the Queen; I confused my puzzles today. That’s what happens when one works several in a row. Her Majesty was otherwise engaged.

  8. Very good fun, though, like Malcolm, what is ‘perhaps’ doing in the clue for 13a? That was my LOI and ‘perhaps’ confused me, eventually I ignored it.
    At the easier end of Ray-T for me.
    A superb crossword week so far.
    Thanks Kath for the hints and Ray-T for the challenge.

    1. Interesting reading Kath’s hint, I had the definition as ‘perhaps make’, I thought the ‘short’ referred to the shortened use of detectives.
      It probably just works now.

      1. Hoofit
        I took the “perhaps’ to refer to the process of making a short…ie an alcoholic drink, as well as shortening something.

  9. I managed to finish this without help today. Relieved as I’ve struggled with RayT lately. 8d brought a smile. Many thanks to the setter and to Kath. Have we lost the queen, or am I on the wrong day?

  10. Mr T appears to mellowing, another straightforward and very enjoyable Thursday puzzle completed at a gallop – **/****.
    Candidates for favourite – 15a, 18a, and 19a – and the winner is 19a.
    Thanks to Mr T and Kath.

  11. Solved alone and unaided but could not disentangle 7d properly, so no hurrah today…..but I am delighted to have solved a Ray T…..doesn’t happen terribly often to me.

    Thanks to Kath and to Ray T for a nice start to the day.

    Stay safe everyone and best wishes to those ailing.

  12. Thanks to Ray T for the usual fun puzzle and to Kath for the well-illustrated review.
    The pick of the clues for me were 12a, 13a and 17d.

  13. Apart from making a mess of the anagram at 20d and initially entering enraged, the rest went in quite nicely (once I had spotted my silly mistake!).

    Thanks to RayT and to Kath

      1. Join the club. I’m glad I wasn’t the only one! I was quite convinced I was right, so it took for ever to untangle the S E corner.

          1. I thought enraged was a better answer for “leading to anger”. What connection has the answer with “anger”?

            1. You’ve changed your email address since your last comment (in 2014) so your comment needed moderation.

  14. Ray T. My nemesis. Bottom half was no problem. The north east corner took me ages. It didn’t help that I wasted a lot of time trying to concoct a fruit of some sort out of each tart in 15a and the United supporter in 5d eluded me for some time. It finally dawned on me that the Americans refer to a plectrum as a pick. Absolutely brilliant puzzle for passing the time. Favourite 16d even though it was fairly obvious. Thanks to all.

  15. I did not find this mellow, but a great challenge. Not sure whether this was *** or **** for difficulty as I lost count! Favourites 8 15 and 26a and 3 7 and 22d. I was looking for a plant called Lexus at 6d until I saw the light, and talking of lights I confidently inserted highlight for 9a until I saw it in the right light! I was stuck in the NW until I got 1a which took some juggling around with letters. I got 2d then without knowing it was an acronym and wondered why the first letters were not indicated in the clue. The answer to 1d would not have readily sprung to mind without the checkers. Nice misdirection for me at 26a where I was looking forward to a bunch of flowers. Thanks very much Ray T and congrats to Kath. Sorry your minor typo was picked up after such a valiant effort.

    1. I googled a plant called Lexus and got some detailed information about a factory in😏 Minnesota

    2. Another day of failing to follow your sage advice – 14d & 18a were two of my last three remaining.

  16. Another delightful puzzle from the master of both brevity and innuendo. How kind of him to give us two sweethearts to make up for the absence of our first lady. Like Wanda, I decided that she’s probably still recovering from the celebrations to mark her consort’s birthday.
    Favourite – well I’ve managed to narrow it down to a choice between 12&15a plus 5d but there were plenty of others in contention.

    Devotions as always to Mr T and many thanks to Kath for another of her great reviews – you’re always so refreshingly honest!

    1. Perhaps Ray T thought the Duke deserved another day in the 9a after his birthday .

  17. Ray T to a T for me. Lots of really good clues with misdirections, helpful anagrams and lurkers scattered about nicely.
    15a gets my vote with 5d close.
    Knew the GOAT, wonder what sport started it? Basketball would be my guess.
    Brisk (coldish) North Easterly tested my shorts resolve at 6.30 this morning. Yesterday watched a kite surfer get going unaided into the incoming tide, white horses and all. Really impressive skill he made it look so easy.
    Thanks Ray T and Kath for the usual entertaining (& self-deprecating) review.

    1. Purportedly, Greatest Of All Time was coined by Lonnie Ali, wife of Muhammad Ali, in September 1992 in reference, of course, to her husband. But, apparently, the acronym did not come into regular use until 2000. So, the sport does start with a B!

      For Kath, as an acronym, it is not in the Revised 13th Edition of the BRB, which remains the latest published edition, either.

  18. I find myself not in the mood today for some unknown reason. I could get nowhere with Ray T today and, in fact, gave up.

    Thank you, Ray T but I was not on your wavelength today. The more I tried the worse I became and ended up quite frustrated. Thank you, too, Kath for the hints.

    Tomorrow is another day! :good: :yes:

    1. Steve,
      For me a “put it down come back later” approach often works. I have had a “3 put-down day” but give up if it hasn’t worked by then.

      1. I should have done that, LBR but having to take Hudson to the vet (routine jabs) kind of threw me. It’s entirely my fault because I was trying to rush and that stops the thought processes. I like to have the puzzle done by lunchtime if I can with the majority being completed over the morning coffee and teacakes!

        I will have a look at the Toughie but I am never too bothered if I get nowhere with that. Not getting anywhere with the back pager galls somewhat. Wind and rain down here in the Welsh Marches so I bet you’re getting battered in Scotland.

    2. Well, it’s allowed. The put it down and have another look advice often works for me also.

  19. Held up slightly in the NE corner with 7d being the last in. Some lovely clues, my favourite being 15a. Thanks to Kath and today’s setter.

  20. Today’s offering from RayT was at the straight forward end of his spectrum but enjoyable nonetheless. My COTD, 9a. Thanks Ray and Kath for the review🦇

  21. Even allowing for Mr CS interrupting me with questions about things I didn’t really want to talk about while crossword solving, I found this towards the trickier end of his spectrum. No particular favourites, although I suppose I did smile at 3d with its double sweethearts

    Thanks to Mr T and Kath.

    We ‘broke out’ of the village for this morning and went up to the coast (Reculver) for our walk. Despite the very gusty wind, it was wonderful to go somewhere else after 12 weeks of going round and round the same route (particularly as we’ve been going round there most days for 15 years!)

    1. Spotted you posted on fifteen squared yesterday. Is it just me or has the Graun been particularly demanding this week ?
      Today doesn’t look much easier either…

      1. I think so – mind you when you do most of the available cryptics most days, remembering which one was which and what you thought of them isn’t easy

      2. I always read the blog first. Too many ‘ooh ahhs’ and I swerve it.
        This weeks quiptic is very good.
        Setter called Matilda is excellent.
        The jump between the quiptic and the Graun back pager is still too wide for me. 225 is a good read though.

        1. Oddly enough Hoofit I rattled through that in double quick time the other night & somehow the answers seemed vaguely familiar. It was only sometime later that it dawned on me that I’d done it before because the Graun had mistakenly posted it in either the cryptic or prize slot some days earlier. It’s definitely easier second time around. Delighted to eventually finish today’s Tramp – easier than first 3 days but tough by DT back page comparison.

          1. Funny you should say that, I had a feeling of deja vu also doing the quiptic!!

  22. Quite a struggle for me today. Got there eventually but the west held out for some time. Matters weren’t helped by initially putting high rather than spot in for 9a ( kind of works – anyone else do likewise ? ) & back to my usual inability to spot lurkers. As always with a Ray T a thoroughly enjoyable battle with 15a & 17d the pick of the clues for me.
    Thanks to all.

    1. It was definitely a highlight for me too. I think of highlight as a synonym for stress whether by highlighting a phrase with a marker pen or highlighting a point in a speech.

  23. I didn’t know that GOAT acronym and was chuntering about why there was no “ initial” indicator. Hence my LOI ( and 13a, can’t remember which).
    One of those puzzles where you pretty much could bung everything and only needed 1 or 2 hints, or retrospective looks, for parsing. Thanks to Kath for 17d – it was an obvious bung and even the wordplay used recent synonym for fight, but I was too thick to work it out.
    I’m blaming it on 36 hrs in bed. Haven’t done that for years, but hot and cold, drowsiness, no appetite and a few aches and pains did for me. Unlikely to be the C word, though. Brain working today (almost).

  24. This took me some time to complete I think Ray T must have got it in for me today, usually I find his crosswords quite flowing but this one proved to be a struggle. Quite a bit of electronic help needed. Favourites 15a and 7d. Missed yesterday as at last new car available to be picked up so off to pick it up. Face masks to the fore.
    I hope everybody is keeping well and safe. Iam sure normality will retutn one day.
    Thanks to Kath and Ray T

      1. My new toy was due day after lockdown . It arrived a week ago. Not any of the 3 but electric but not converted milk float. A “Chinese MG”. Probably has the no-cost COVID option somwher. Cheap as chips but costs nothing to run as I charge off solar panels.
        Just await the BGT I am having restored now. Not a classic but have had it over 30 years so sentiment ruled my head & Mrs LrOK’s objections

        1. I had an MGB many years ago it was yellow with black roof from memory OUO212R. Great car but wedlock got in the way.

          1. Mine’s a chrome bumper from 68 in mineral blue. Stuck with the original colour. Just got to get it from Cardiff to here when the mechanics are sorted. It was laid up for 20 years but has started.

            1. Mine was the spec with the black bumpers and mag wheels, changed them but didn’t tackle the bumpers. It came with non standard steering wheel as well.

              1. Mine had the black bumpers – devil to polish! I changed the wheels for wires and they were equally difficult to keep looking good. Great flicking out of overdrive and charging on. :smile:

                1. PS I’m fairly sure my MGB was one of the last to be produced at Abingdon before production was moved to Leyland. I may be wrong but I am sure a few black bumper models were made in Oxfordshire before the move. Great cars and the only one I have ever felt comfortable in driving. The distance to the pedals suited my long legs perfectly.

        2. I had a BGT way back. MNT 50P was the registration and not even the arrival of our daughter would make me get rid of it. However, when said daughter grew and her legs started to appear between the driver and passenger seats it was time to let go.

          1. The late Mrs Spook loved the B but when daughter came along it had to go. Even she was sad to see it go. It was then a crumpet catcher.

            1. We had an MGB, In 1977, in racing green, K registered. It was lovely, but pregnancy the following year put paid to that.
              This was after a dodgy white Spitfire….
              We did seem to change cars very often in those days. They all seemed to end up with holes in, ill-fitting fly windows or something in the chassis you didn’t even want to look at……
              Come to think of it, that MGB had a hole in the silencer during a trip to Derry in 77, which attracted quite a lot of attention from chaps in uniform when we crossed into Donegal…..

  25. Finished in two sessions pre and post golf. Enjoyable and not too outlandish for a Ray T.
    Thx to all

  26. I needed some assistance today from my crossword dictionary to find the required synonyms for some of the answers eg 9a and 26a. Wasted time on 1d trying to incorporate urn into the solution; didn’t see the lurker in 14d for ages either. Still, I did find this puzzle really enjoyable with plenty to think about. What more can you ask for? My favourite clue was 13a. Thanks to the compiler and to Kath: I always enjoy your reviews and today’s was no exception.

  27. Loved this one thank you RayT and as always Kath … still don’t get the logic of 2d but I am sure that’s my problem. 3d my favourite

    1. Neither did I but Kath explained it in the hint and there has been further elucidation in the comments. Gloat is a synonym for triumph in the sense of someone feeling too pleased with himself.

  28. A nice solve, I enjoyed 10 & 18 across as well as 16 down no COTD springs to mind just time well spent, thanks to Ray T and Kathy.


  29. A really solid ** I thought, although nearly slipped into *** time before 7d parsed. Thanks to Kath for explaining 27a which was obvious but I couldn’t work out quite why! I think a **** for enjoyment as the sun now breaks out in Devon.

  30. I found this one quite tough. Had to use a few of Kath’s excellent hints. Most difficult were 1a and 27a in my opinion. Not sure that answer to 28a is strictly speaking a synonym for grievance. BRB
    doesn’t seem to think so. Thanks to Kath and setter.

  31. Found this a bit of a struggle but got there in the end ****/*** 😃 Favourites 12a & 15a Thanks to Kath, particularly for trying to explain the parsing of 27a to me 😳 and thanks to Ray T

  32. Late in as I have had a Rotary ladies Zoom meeting since 2, so everything has been said. I managed to solve without recourse to Kath’s excellent hints though always nice to read them afterwards. And all the news of your various activities. Coffee, tea cakes,golf, walks – some people are having too much fun! I think my brain has been switching off at twilight because I have not completed a toughie this week. Please tell me they are getting tougher? I must eat more fish.

    1. You’re making a consistent typo in your email address. I’ve corrected it in your latest 2 comments.

  33. Hats off to all who managed this. I always struggle on Ray T days, and today I was up the creek without a paddle. I got four answers at first pass, but none felt right enough to pen them in (they were all correct). 2d was a bung in on second pass, although parsing it was beyond me, as I had never heard of that acronym. I agree, Kath, sounds rude. I knew I was in trouble when I couldn’t quickly solve the 1a anagram. Thanks to Ray T and to Kath for the badly needed hints, but throwing in the towel for today.

  34. Enjoyed today’s word game but will have to wait until later to see what others thought – so many comments to read in these Lockdown days. IMHO 1d is not really a lost synonym. Liked the 13a double meaning and 10a and 22d also appealed. Appreciate 18a contains a lurker but not sure I can fully parse the TTY – obviously being more thick than usual! Thanks for all the fun Ray T and Kath.

    1. I’m not sure I understand your TTY – perhaps I’m the one being thick/dim now?

    2. The TTY are there Angelove hidden in plain sight on either side of the word RAVES.

      1. Thanks Kath and MP. Of course I can see the whole lurker is there but is “about” the lurker indicator? Anyway I think I should now just go quietly 🤪

        1. Yes – about is the ‘lurky’ indicator, and there’s no need to go anywhere quietly!

  35. ***/****. As always the clues are short and to the point – elegantly constructed. My favourite was 15a for its subtle misdirection. 2d was a bung in for me but interesting to see the comments regarding its potential origins. I have the latest edition of the BRB but I suspect it might be in their numerous pages of words/definitions being kept for the 14th edition. Thanks to Ray T and Kath for the review.

  36. I seem to have struggled today and as Kath, I will blame interruptions. The lurker at 18a almost escaped me and I had to follow up with a check on synonyms but caricature was there in BRB even if not in my brain. I had a bit of bother with 13a too like others. that 10a pic doesn’t look real. I for one have never even seen the like and certainly not on a beer drinker!
    Thanks to Kath and RayT. Time to put the shopping away, one of the interruptions mentioned above was a pointless shopping trip where Mama Bee lost her list and bought loads of stuff we already had and didn’t need. but at least we won’t run out of Marmite!

  37. Ia took a little time to unravel and had to plonk in 27a so thanks Kath for the explanation. Favourite 15a as it reminded me of blackberries

      1. Rats!! I thought I’d got away with that one but all the pics of ‘proper’ plectrums – ?plectra, if anyone wants to be pedantic – were so boring that I wanted a guitar too and this was what came up. At least there hasn’t been a ‘hmm’ on the blog today but I suppose there’s still time.

      2. It’s hard enough solving a puzzle and writing helpful hints. I have several plectra from amongst others Bob Dylan and Pete Townshend.

  38. I’m never on RayT wavelength, so nothing’s new. I used e-help to solve the top and bottom anagrams to get me started. I managed to solve about half before solving the rest with e-help. I’ve got lots to do, the rain has stopped, so it’s into the pool for me and my exercises.
    Thanks to RayT and Kath, your usual entertaining review! Well done for solving that lot!

  39. Excellent fun as ever from RayT. We found it a little trickier than most people are reporting though.
    Checked the word count of course and all in order.
    Thanks RayT and Kath.

  40. Evening all. My thanks to Kath for the review and to everybody else for the comments.


    1. Good evening Mr T and many thanks for the puzzle. Wish you could teach some other setters about the difference between innuendo and outright vulgarity!

    2. Thank you RayT. I could not get into the groove today but that is my problem. Your puzzles always entertain and I solve far more than not.

      I will await your next offering and try to get my mind working in a better way than today.

  41. I’m rarely on RayT’s wavelength, in fact i’m usually on a totally different waveband, but I found this much more doable and less frustrating without the overstretched synonyms. I even managed a few smiles along the way.
    I’m sure i’ll get my comeuppance in a fortnight.
    Thanks to both RayT and Kath.

  42. After some time spent putting out summer plants (quite nuts in our heat and humidity), my brain seems to have kicked in, and I was able to finish the Ray T special after all. Just stalled at 22d as I didn’t know the affectionate term for the BBC. Most references I see in the DT to the Beeb are rather unaffectionate. It doesn’t seem like the old Aunty BBC these days anyway. So again, thank you Ray T and Kath for the workout.

  43. Thanks to RayT for the puzzle and Kath for the blog. Solved at silly o clock before tackling The Toughie. A great puzzle but over too soon. I remember the old pre blog days when a puzzle like this would have taken most of the day and any unsolved clues would have to remain unsolved until tomorrow. Not so today. C’est la vie

  44. Ho hum, the usual throw in the towel on a Ray T puzzle! I might get the hang of them one day…..
    Thanks to Kath for the blog

    1. You don’t hear it so much these days but the BBC (often referred to as the Beeb) used to be affectionally called ‘Auntie’ – with that knowledge, read Kath’s hint again

  45. It’s no secret that I like RayT crosswords but like some of our later commentators I found the NE particularly challenging, not helped by never having heard of the acronym in 2d. I guessed it was some sort of Americanism, like MVP, and not used over here. Hey ho! I’ve heard of it now. I’ve no idea why it took me so long to get 15a, I’ve lost enough of them usually down the hole in the middle of one of my acoustics! It’s hard to get the little blighters out. Any road up it was my favourite. Many thanks to RayT, thanks for popping in again, and Kath.

  46. Thanks again to Ray T for the crossword and to all of you for the comments.
    Night night everyone, sleep tight and mind the bugs don’t bite.
    A demain,

Comments are closed.