DT 29428 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29428

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29428

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.

A wildlife report this week.
The NZ dabchick that was a highlight of our walks during lockdown must have decided that it was time to find a new pond. We miss him. 
We were walking on Sunday with some visitors and there was a juvenile fur seal on the main beach. It was right at the water’s edge playing in the small waves and did not seem at all spooked by the strollers who stopped to admire.
This morning there was a group of variable oyster catchers having noisy encounters on an exposed sand bar near the river mouth.
We feel very privileged to have all of this so close to where we live.

Good fun again from Jay with plenty to tickle the taste buds.  Apart from some hesitation with 11a it all slotted together smoothly for us.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Such ales come too refined and sweet (9,6)
CHOCOLATE MOUSSE : An anagram (refined) of SUCH ALES COME TOO.

9a     Affray regularly seen after prison food like this (4-3)
STIR-FRY : A slang word for prison is followed by the second, fourth and sixth letters of affray.

10a     A lot must be upset about management buyout being a lottery (7)
TOMBOLA : The three letter abbreviation for management buyout is inside an anagram (must be upset) of A LOT.

11a     Near disastrous time invested in Virgin transport (9)
ENRAPTURE : An anagram (disastrous) of NEAR and then virgin or unsullied contains T(ime).

12a     At the outset, such things even promote progress (4)
STEP : Initial letters, indicated by ‘at the outset’, of four words in the clue.

13a     Linen item — type mostly used after sleep (6)
NAPKIN : Another word for a short sleep is followed by a type or variety with the last letter removed.

15a     Do nothing, say about a gun being unloaded (8)
STAGNATE : ‘A’ from the clue and the word ‘gun’ without its central letter are inside say or aver.

18a     Quiet and strong, showed indifference (8)
SHRUGGED : A two letter instruction to be quiet and then strong or craggy.

19a     Maintain a lock must be sent back (6)
ASSERT : ‘A’ from the clue and then the reversal of a lock of hair.

22a     Style adopted by Michelangelo (4)
ELAN : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

23a     Leave high ground for game bird (9)
PARTRIDGE : Leave or separate, and then high ground that connects peaks.

26a     Warning troubled dictator after daughter goes missing (4,3)
RIOT ACT : An anagram (troubled) of (d)ICTATOR after D(aughter has been removed.

27a     Father will accept pointless risk gives spice (7)
PAPRIKA : A four letter familiar word for father surrounds risk with a cardinal compass point removed.

28a     Boy read brightly about such extortion (8,7)


1d     Clip oddly put on rear tank (7)
CISTERN : The first and third letters of clip and the rear of a boat.

2d     Going north nowhere is open supplying coppice material (5)
OSIER : A reversed lurker, hiding in the clue.

3d     High season for the children? (9)
OFFSPRING : High, or decomposing and then the season that we in NZ are heading towards.

4d     A favela harbouring Yankee finding refuge (6)
ASYLUM : ‘A’ from the clue and another word for favela contain the letter represented by Yankee.

5d     Request access, needing to take food inside (8)
ENTREATY : Access or ‘way in’ contains a word meaning to take food.

6d     Units that show resistance working for the government (4)
OHMS : Double definition.

7d     Change tack in coastal area and get a snack? (9)
SHORTCAKE : A general word for a coastal area surrounds an anagram (change) of TACK.

8d     Former politician drowning in beer, for instance (7)
EXAMPLE : The prefix meaning former and a Member of Parliament is surrounded by a synonym for beer.

14d     Ordeal of a Conservative supporting band set up without love (9)
PURGATORY : ‘A’ from the clue and a familiar word for Conservative follow the reversal of a band once the tennis score love has been removed.

16d     Top grub as served here? (9)
GASTROPUB : An anagram (served) of TOP GRUB AS. The whole clue gives the definition.

17d     Send off — case of damage and small repair (8)
DESPATCH : The first and last letters of damage, then S(mall) and repair or mend.

18d     Stripped organ found in outhouse (7)
SHEARED : An outhouse often found in a garden contains an auditory organ.

20d     Those people may accept charge for treatment (7)
THERAPY : A pronoun signifying ‘those people’ contains a slang word for a criminal charge.

21d     Real support on English right (6)
PROPER : A support or strut and the abbreviations for English and right.

24d     Push for access to house (5)
DRIVE : A double definition. The access to the house might be a tree-lined one.

25d     Hitches a ride, revealing dress (4)
SARI : Another lurker, hiding in the clue.

Our last one in that also earned a special chuckle from us was 11a.

Quickie pun    hide    +    ranges    =    hydrangeas

86 comments on “DT 29428

  1. I found this an enjoyable challenge (2*/4*) although like the two Kiwis it took me a moment or two to sort out 11a. It’s now one of my favourite clues together with 18a and 14d. Thanks to Jay who never fails toproduce a great crossword. Thanks also to the Kiwis. I really enjoy your wildlife diary.

  2. Lovely gentle themed Jay puzzle, just right for a sunny midweek morning. Got the long anagram in the South straight away but the top proved a tad more elusive but I eventually saw it and it unlocked the top.
    Where does one start for a podium? I liked 11a plus 3, 4,6,14 & 16d.
    Concurr with the ratings of the 2Ks. I often sea a seal when swimming at my local beach. Beautiful creature.

  3. 2*/5*. Another gem from Jay with too many great clues to try to pick a favourite.

    Many thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  4. Enjoyable as always with Jay. Pretty straightforward really but fun while it lasted. Liked the two big anagrams top & bottom & the clueing throughout had great surfaces.
    Thanks to Jay & the 2Ks

  5. That was good fun this morning teasing out some less obvious clues, I got the two long anagrams quite quickly which helped me on my way. Thank you to Jay and to Mr K for a happy start to the morning.

    1. Curiously it was the bottom anagram that gave me most help. The top one came later and then the rest of the top half flowed smoothly. 11a LOI here too

  6. Yes, Jen, the two long anagrams certainly helped me to a ** solution time. And 11a was LOI for me too.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks

  7. Very enjoyable middle-of-the-road puzzle
    I did think there’s something a bit odd in 27a the ‘gives’ sticks out, shouldn’t it be ‘giving’? Maybe not, what do I know…
    Thanks to Jay & 2Ks

        1. Yes it is the Istanbul one.
          Thought it more tasteful than the bathroom option for a pic.

          1. I thought it might have been a little joke – The Cistern Chapel
            Amused me, but I’ll get my coat :smile:

              1. Glad it amused someone. Treat Sadie to a doggie bic from me and a malt treat of your choice for you Merusa

  8. Usual high standard of Jay puzzles. too many great clues to pick one.
    Loads to eat today in fact even a place to get the whole menu.
    23a in a 9a with 27a followed by 1a served with a 7d biscuit.
    A proper linen 13a all served in a 16d.
    lets hope the final bill isn’t 28a too!
    Thanks to all 3 birds ( 4 if you include 23a)

      1. I had noticed eat had reappeared in 5d but out of deference to Jane’s “indigestion” yesterday I desisted.

        1. Yes, but there is a world of difference between “eat(s)” meaning “food” and “to take food”.

      2. Biggles, in true Labradoe tradition says “Who cares? Either way it’s food just let me at it”. I’m sure Hudson would agree.

          1. Definition in the Labrador BRB “Edible: anything that fits in the mouth (and some things that don’t).”

              1. feet – noun – human anatomy evolved for finding pieces of Lego and upturned plugs in the dark

        1. Sadie is a far pickier eater, that must be the little bit of “other” in her. My previous labs have been walking dustbins.

  9. Lots of well constructed clues from Jay. **/**** I particularly liked 7d and 15a but my favourite is 14d. We’ve all been living there long enough. Thanks to all.

  10. Another classic by the master craftsman Jay, as enjoyable and witty as ever. I agree with the Kiwis that 11a is worthy of being singled out: it is a model of misdirection and cryptic wiliness, and certainly my COTD. I also liked 4d, 7d,14d, & 24a which is as succinctly clever as they come. Nice to hear about the wildlife the Kiwis are enjoying. Thanks to them for an enjoyable review and to Jay for the continued brilliance. ** / ****

  11. Many thanks to Jay for yet another top-quality puzzle, and to the 2Kiwis for the write-up.

  12. I will happily join those who thoroughly enjoyed this little gem but were unable to select a favourite from the high number of excellent clues on offer, although I stuck a pin in and came up with 11a.

    Many thanks to our feathered friends.

  13. Lovely puzzle and finished totally unaided, which is unusual for me when it comes to Jay. Loads of good clues so difficult to choose a favourite but, if pushed, I would go for 23a. 12a was a bung in and I have yet to check if it is correct.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2Kiwis for the puzzle and hints respectively.

      1. Thanks, Medusa – I missed that. Another indicator to stick in the mental files.

  14. Quite straight forward with only 1a holding out longer than it should. Now off you go and tackle the Toughie! It’s pretty friendly today.

  15. A lovely straightforward puzzle 😃 **/**** Favourites 8 & 14d 🤗 Thanks to Jay and to the 2xKs especially for the informative video on the Variable Oystercatcher

  16. All went swimmingly after I lazily sought electronic help with 1a although there was a slight hiatus in the SW. My Fav was 3d selected from quite a few clever clues. Thank you Jay and the 2Kiwis.

    1. I didn’t seek help with 1a but my first pass through the fodder produced C******** Mouses and wondered if those vile pink confections of my childhood were correct. I don’t recall them containing any actual C********!

  17. For some daft reason 15a stalled me ! Otherwise fine . I noted A to Z in the quick crossword again.

  18. A most enjoyable and very straightforward puzzle from our Wednesday maestro completed at a fast gallop – 1.5*/5*.
    I do think that 16d is a terrible word. I like the joke I heard about pubs and food. Person goes into a pub and asks ‘Do you serve food?’ The answer is is ‘Yes, salt and vinegar or cheese and onion.’
    A Hmm on the sounding of the Quickie Pun.
    Candidates for favourite – 18a, 27a, 3d, 6d, and 20d – and the winner is 3d.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  19. I did better than I usually do, but still didn’t manage to quite finish. Thanks for the tips and thank you world for saving me from encountering 7d. They look disgusting. Enjoyable puzzle.

  20. Wednesday back-pagers are always a delight, particularly when accompanied by a local wildlife report from our 2Ks.
    3d made me laugh so earns a place on the podium along with 11&18a plus 5d.

    Many thanks to both Jay and the NZ twosome.

  21. What bliss! Reclining in glorious sunshine with no wind and a fresh-fruit smoothie, and as usual Jay’s Wednesday puzzle right on my wavelength. Mrs Doguern helped with the last four, which she got at a glance, so marital bliss as well. Can’t believe I didn’t get 13a. 2d was somewhere in my distant memory, but had to check the dictionary to be sure. Never heard of a favela, but again a check confirmed its meaning. Too many good clues to pick any favourites, so trophies go to all of them. Look forward to next Wednesday! Thanks to Jay and as usual the 2Ks.

  22. Top draw back pager and a **/**** for me too,
    Nothing obscure and a pleasure to solve, favourite was 14d-lovely word!
    Thanks to setter and 2K’s-pasty in the oven and Yorkshire Tea brewing-what a nice start to the day.

  23. I can only endorse doguern’s summary. Bliss. Finished the crossword alone and unaided (not a usual occurrence!) and enjoyed it immensely. Too many excellent clues to mention but, like others, I loved 11a. Many thanks to Jay – how does he hit the spot every week? Though the 2K hints weren’t needed, I enjoyed the glimpse into NZ shore life.
    Now back to finish mowing the (parched) grass!

    1. You’ve switched from an alias to your name so your comment required moderation. Both old and new names will work from now on.

  24. Solving the two big anagrams (as reported above) early was an enormous help. I was bashing away at the crossword and was a bit stuck when the Amazon Prime Now grocery delivery arrived (Solero lollies had melted – thanks Amazon!).
    After the full disinfectant routine, I returned and found new inspiration. 11a was the last in, figured out from the letters in the down clues. Now I ‘get’ it, I give 11a rather a big cheer as clue of the day.
    Thanks to Jay and the 2Ks.

  25. Solved alone and unaided and understood the answers so a hurrah day for me. Haven’t had one of those for a while.

    Thanks to Jay and the 2 Kiwis

  26. Big thank you to Jay for a fun solve today, and to the 2Kiwis for helping with the 3 that prevented me from completing unaided. 2d I had forgotten, 7d I don’t really think of as a snack, and 11a where I went down the wrong transport road. For some reason 1a jumped off the page at me, without my usual trick of jumbling the letters. Had a chuckle at 6d, but thought 15a was clever and gets my COTD vote.

  27. A nice steady solve and the **/**** was just right, on the across 9, 11, 22, and 23 on the downs 2, 17, no real COTD as always enjoyable and off course thank you to Jay and the 2Kiwis.


  28. A lovely crossword and I agree with the K’s about difficulty and enjoyment.
    I didn’t get many of the across answers to begin with and was beginning to think it might be one of those Wednesdays when it’s better to start with the downs but then got going.
    The third word of the 23a clue made me try, briefly, to make it an anagram.
    The pic for 7d doesn’t look anything like mine!
    11 and 15a both took a while but no other major trouble.
    I liked 9a and 3 and 8d. I think my favourite was the sneaky little 22a lurker.
    Thanks to Jay and to the K’s.

  29. I echo most of the previous comments – very enjoyable and nothing too obscure. The mere recollection of having to study Dante’s 14a many years ago still brings on my Herbert Lom twitch! Thanks to the compiler and the 2 Kiwis for their review.

  30. Found this straightforward for Jay so either I am getting the wavelength or benevolent Jay turned up today. Getting the two long anagrams (without a pencil, getting much better at that) helped. Whichever it was very enjoyable. Like yesterday a tale of two halves. South proving easier than North
    Go with those who have 11a as COTD.
    Thanks to Jay & the 2Ks.
    Wind has died down a bit from yesterday’s near gales which were bad enough to close the Dornoch brige toi high sided vehicles. Can somebody inform our weather controller 15C (feels like 7) is not accetable it is nearly August!

  31. Loved it all! I finished it before finishing breakfast, that must be a first for me. The two long anagrams pretty much popped off the page at me.
    Like RD, no faves, how can you pick just one? I didn’t have to look up one thing, all words that I knew.
    Thank you Jay, you are a star, and the 2Kiwis for your nature snapshots and review. I’m a very happy girl today.

  32. Nice **/**** puzzle for midweek. Clues for favourites include 9a, 18a, 28a, 3d & 17d … winner 17d. SE was last area completed with last in 21d. Interesting to note the electronic BRB does not even recognize 16d as an anagram.

    Thanks to Jay and 2K’s

  33. Morning all.
    Feels like another frosty morning here but we don’t mind that as there’s usually a fine calm day to follow. Here’s hoping.
    Glad that people have once again enjoyed the Jay puzzle as much as we did.

  34. Lovely Wednesday puzzle. All the clues so neatly wrapped up and a joy to unpack. Thanks you to all.

  35. Another enjoyable Jay puzzle with the exception of 11a which had me completely beaten, so thanks to the two Ks for the hint.
    I thought the second word of the pun should have ended in R rather than S! The plants always remind me of my Grandparents house in Torquay.
    Thanks to Jay and the two Kiwis.

  36. Quality Jay puzzle as ever, just a slight hold up in the NW as I knew neither 2d answer or favela in 4d. My favourite 8d just for the image of drowning in 🍺!!

  37. I was puzzled by 17d , I thought it was spelled Dispatch , but then my spelling is atrocious.
    Nice puzzle and thanks to all concerned.
    Suffering from post covid now , ie asthma, which I never had before . Getting a chest Xray soon .I think Irish doctors are only beginning to get the idea that post covid is a thing.

  38. Loved this puzzle. Slow start but gathered pace and managed to finish without help. Quite a few clues got a smiley face including 18a, 3d, 14d and 17d, my fav was 8d.
    Thanks to Jay and the Kiwis

  39. I’m in the “I made harder work of the NE than I should have” camp this evening. Very late start due to a 6 o’clock zoom meeting and being so late home I hadn’t dealt with the dogs then had to cook dinner. Darts didn’t go as hoped for last night due to an inability to get a double to finish despite being well ahead in most games I played in, managed to win the last two though. Good crossword. Favourites were 23a, my favourite bird and 16d because it contains the word pub. Many thanks to Jay and 2K’s.

    1. Forgot to mention I had to look up the word favela, never heard of it but I have now.

  40. Very good. Solved pretty quickly – much quicker than some recent ones. No aids needed. Always enjoy reading the hints after the event but also managed all the parsing. 28a was in quicker that 1a although I guessed the first word of the latter and they looked at what was left. I had though of two other desserts with this main ingredient but the correct one came when I isolated the letters. Favourites 11 and 15a and 3 and 17d. I am surprised I did not circle more, but I tend to do that when the penny drops after a lot of thought. Last one in was 26a. 11a and 15a probably took me marginally longer than most which is the case when you quite an unusual combination of letters. Thanks Jay and 2Ks and everyone for interesting comments.

  41. Thanks to Jay and to the 2 Kiwis for the review and hints. A nice puzzle from Jay, only hold up was with 11a, took me ages to work out. Favourite was 16d. Was 2*/4* for me.

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