DT 29442 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29442

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29442

Hints and tips by Deep Threat

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Good morning from South Staffs where it’s misty and overcast at the moment. A fine example of the pathetic fallacy, in that the weather matches my mood as our nanny state effectively removes any hope I had of a holiday in France this autumn.

I’m not sure what to make of today’s puzzle: it took me into *** time to fill the grid, but parsing some of the answers took longer, and I’m still not entirely sure I haven’t missed something. No doubt our esteemed commentariat will set me straight.

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.

Across

1a           Making an issue of what’s been written? (10)
PUBLISHING – Cryptic definition of the process of getting one’s written work into the public domain.

6a           Italian church passion (4)
ITCH – An abbreviation for Italian followed by an abbreviation for church.

10a         Shabby inner-city parking causes depression (5)
SLUMP – Some run-down inner city property followed by the sign that parking is allowed.

11a         Charging in, verbalising (9)
INVOICING – In (from the clue), followed by another word for ‘verbalising’.

12a         Trooped off to see something exploding (7)
TORPEDO – Anagram (off) of TROOPED.

Successful torpedo firing | Navy Daily

13a         Colourful bit of scenery drops — sign the show’s over (7)
RAINBOW – Some drops from the sky, followed by what the actors do at the end of the show.

14a         Communist allowed ground-up dry tea for celebration (3,6,3)
RED LETTER DAY – Put together the usual colour of Communist, another word for ‘allowed’, and an anagram (ground up) of DRY TEA.

A red-letter day for Second Life, Second Life 2.0 viewer and more ...

18a         Electrical fault noticed with restricted observation? (5-7)
SHORT-SIGHTED – A five-letter word for an electrical fault (more fully a (5,7) phrase), followed by another word for ‘noticed’, giving us a description of those with a common inability to see clearly.

21a         Slip put right near the back of a book (7)
ERRATUM – Cryptic definition of a note correcting an error in a publication.

23a         Praise British university breaking routine (7)
TRIBUTE British and University inserted into a word for ‘routine’ or ‘hackneyed’.

24a         Food giving a chap toil when cooking (9)
CHIPOLATA – Anagram (when cooking) of A CHAP TOIL.

Chipolata | Local Heart, Global Soul

25a         Makes more flat golfing equipment (5)
IRONS – Double definition: a household chore; or some golf clubs.

26a         Revolutionary ‘Something in the Air’, with a narrative (4)
SAGA – Reverse (revolutionary) something of which air is constituted, then add A (from the clue).

27a         Disregarding odds, unties astern — the US task, finding wartime havens (6,4)
NISSEN HUTS – Alternate letters of the third to the seventh word of the clue.

Nissen Buildings - Nissen Buildings

Down

1d           Vegetable bringing in ready money once (6)
PESETA – A small green vegetable wrapped round ‘ready’, as in the state of a sprinter just before the starting pistol is fired, to get a former European currency.

2d           Obscure outbreak starts with Belgium not France (6)
BLURRY – Start with a word meaning ‘outbreak’ (of activity), then replace the IVR code for France at the beginning of the word with the IVR code for Belgium.

3d           Discharge from lemon — impatient to get cleaned up (14)
IMPLEMENTATION – Anagram (to get cleaned up) of LEMON IMPATIENT.

4d           Populace‘s vote given to Hearts with two narrow away wins (3,6)
HOI POLLOI – The abbreviation for the heart suit at cards is followed by two sets of letters which look like the smallest possible football score for an away win (following the convention that the home team’s score comes first). A word for an election is then inserted, and we have the Greek phrase for ‘the many’ or the people.

5d           On the up, some prosper eventually — or not (5)
NEVER – The answer to this all-in-one clue is hidden in reverse in the clue (on the up).

7d           Rest found here in Bill and Ben’s garden? (4,4)
TWIN BEDS – To make sense of this clue you need to be of an age (and possibly of a nationality) to remember Bill and Ben the Flowerpot Men. The two were identical in appearance, which gives the clue to the first word in the answer. The second word is something found in gardens, which in another context is somewhere to rest (though Bill and Ben, of course, slept in their flowerpots)

8d           Bad manners where driving is fastest? (8)
HIGHWAYS – Split the answer (4,4) and you get a word meaning ‘bad’, like rotten meat, and another word for ‘manners’ or ‘behaviour’.

9d           Something printed from two journalists I crashed into south of border (7,7)
LIMITED EDITION – Put together another word for a border, two examples of the usual crossword journalist, I (from the clue), and an anagram (crashed) of INTO.

15d         Island folk project a hit, Ian Stewart boasts (9)
TAHITIANS – Hidden in the clue.

16d         Spirits seen in German city church steeple’s entrance (8)
ESSENCES – A city in the Ruhr area of Germany, followed by the acronym for the Church of England and the first letter (entrance) of Steeple.

17d         Brief time in front of grave around memorial showing grief (8)
MOURNING – Put together an abbreviated word for a short period of time, IN (from the clue), and the first letter (front) of Grave. Then insert the sort of memorial which may contain the ashes of the deceased.

19d         Strange dusk gathers over uniform figures in square (6)
SUDOKU – Wrap an anagram (strange) of DUSK around the cricket abbreviation for Over, then add the letter represented by Uniform in the NATO alphabet, to get another component of the Telegraph’s puzzles page.

20d         Playing lines United used to replace energy once (6)
VERSUS – Start with some lines of poetry, then replace one of the abbreviations for Energy with the abbreviation for United, to get ‘playing’, as in Spurs playing Arsenal.

22d         Coming from the south, one’s goal to make US city (5)
MIAMI – ‘One’s’ here is a contraction of ‘one is’. Start with an alternative (equally contracted) way of saying that, then add a goal or intention, and reverse the lot (from the south) to get a city in Florida.

I’m not available next week, so you’ll have a different blogger in the chair.


The Quick Crossword pun BEAU + THAI = BOW TIE

66 comments on “DT 29442
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  1. With an Elgar Toughie, which I have learnt the hard way is just not for me, I was able to settle and solve this puzzle. I was beaten by 29d which I do not understand and there were a couple where the parsing escaped me.

    My COTD is the ironic 27a which one has to go even further back than the flowerpot men to remember.

  2. The first half of this flew in with my early cuppa in bed. But the second half took ages and couldn’t really get my head round it. Last in 20d. No real favourites today but thanks to the setter and Deep Threat. Miserable day here and if I can’t see Blakeney church tower from my bed, I know its going to get worse.

    1. You can enjoy the fresh sea air though. I am from Norwich but have lived in the Midlands for 50 years now. A neighbour in Norwich, Mr Daniels, used to drive to Blakeney every Sunday to play the church organ for them during the 1950s.

  3. Was well into my approaching * * difficulty time with just 20d to go.
    Got stuck until the penny eventually dropped.
    Thought it a brilliant clue.
    Enjoyable throughout.
    Many thanks to the setter and DT for the review.

  4. I found this a fair bit easier than yesterday and more enjoyable too, clever and cryptic, all in all a very good Friday puzzle. Narrowing down a podium is very difficult but I’ve gone for 18&26a plus 19d but my COTD for the excellent surface and wordplay is 4d.
    Many thanks to the setter and to DT, with commiserations over your missed trip.
    3/4.5 *

  5. I enjoyed this crossword, particularly 27a, that was quite a long odd letter clue. 20d took a bit of figuring out, it was the last one I managed to do.

  6. With this compiler, I find it beneficial, once I have a few checkers in, to find the answer and then try to see how it fits the clue. Some of the clues were very contrived and it wasn’t all that enjoyable (2.5*/2*). However, 18a and 9d were quite neatly put together, by contrast and they were much appreciated. Thank you to DT for helping with some of the clues, where I could parse some of the solution but not in its entirety. I was sad to hear about your missed holiday but at least it is not sweltering any more. Thank you to the compiler also

  7. I found this a bit of a chore, quite frankly, beginning with 3d (whose surface is about as lumpy as they come) and ending with 20d. I had no trouble finishing or parsing all of the clues (assuming that Bill and Ben are/were twins?); it was just a joyless kind of workaday job. So sorry about my reaction because I usually find the Friday puzzle one of the week’s highlights. I did like 4 and 17d, with my favourite being 27a. Thanks to Deep Threat and today’s setter. *** / **

  8. I have to agree with Hrothgar that 20d was a top clue, my last one in, and favourite. The whole puzzle was a delight, if a little tricky in places, but rewarding to solve.

    Thanks setter for a fine challenge, and to DT.

  9. The first read through yielded so few that I did briefly wonder whether I’d clicked onto the Toughie by mistake but gradually got going for a fairly pedestrian solve in just under **** time. Not my favourite of the week but still enjoyable nonetheless. I’ll plump for a podium of 11a, the cracking lurker at 15d & gold medal spot to 27a. Bill & Ben brought back memories – flobadob weed.
    Still a couple shy in the Quickie & spent a while trying to make the pun work (silly accents) with the first 3 across answers before the penny dropped. Today’s Toughie seems aptly named….
    Many thanks to the setter & to DT for the review.

  10. Not that tricky for a Friday – my favourite was 7d. We were looking at our giant sunflowers the other afternoon and wondered how Bill and Ben’s friend could be called ‘Little’. 20d reminded me of something said on the television the other day – we’ve got used to 20d being V but the other day someone said [team name] verse (sic) [team name]. Whatever next?

    Thanks to the setter and DT

  11. I found this fairly straightforward and enjoyable; about **/****. Top honours go to 14a, 4d, 7d and 9d.

    Re 20d. I thought this was a bit of a stretch (although someone with a BRB will tell me otherwise) i.e. isn’t “playing against…” the correct phrase?

    Thanks to setter and DT.

          1. Exactly Senf, though I call it his/her artistic licence. I really don’t think it’s a great stretch to get from the definition to the solution. Thought it a very good clue.

          1. And Arsenal team mates are playing with each other but against the opposition.

            End of. I’m being a pedant. 😉 Now to have a look at the Toughie!

  12. Undemanding but fun. NE yielded last. Cooking seems to be becoming chestnutty for anagram e.g. 24a. As for others, 20d remained unsolved prior to blog. No particular Fav. Thank you Mysteron and DT.

  13. Reasonably straightforward so this did not have the ‘feel’ of a typical Friday puzzle but still very enjoyable, completed at a gallop – **/****.
    Candidates for favourite – 10a, 11a, 1d, and 4d – and the winner is 1d.
    Thanks to the setter and DT.

  14. I’m really enjoying the current Friday back-page regime consisting of three very fine setters all with rather different styles. My rating today is 2*/4.5* and my money is on this one being a Zandio composition.

    20d was my last one in and favourite, and it is joined on the podium by 4d & 7d.

    Many thanks to the setter and to DT.

  15. I really enjoyed this one. Just the right amount of head scratching and lightbulb moments. I thought 4d was neat with two away wins. It’s probably an old chestnut but I have never met it before. I also liked 8d but my COTD is 20d because of its simplicity.

    Many thanks to the setter for an enjoyable solve. Thanks, also, to DT for the hints.

    I see it is Elgar on the Toughie today so I won’t even bother to look at it. That, of course, is the wrong attitude. I’ll never get to grips with Elgar unless I tackle his offerings but I should get better with the Toughie overall before trying.

    1. I make you right Steve. Now that the Toughie is on the iPad edition I couldn’t resist having a go while watching various sports on the tv. After 15 mins all I’d got was the 4 wee ones in the middle of the grid & retired feeling completely inadequate. Think I’ll switch to the Graun…..

  16. Mixed bag for me today – readily solved but with a few ‘well, I suppose so’ moments along the way. Not sure that it was a Friday level puzzle?
    Top billing went to 1,10&11a.

    Thanks to our setter and to DT for the review – the child in me rather enjoyed listening to/watching Little Weed again!

  17. Thanks to the setter and Deep Threat for the review and hints. I enjoyed this one, found it quite tricky in places. Some really good clues. I thought 1d was “potato” for a long time, but didn’t put it in, thankfully, as I couldn’t parse it. Got there eventually. Liked 15d, but my favourite was 4d. Last in was 20d. Was 3* /3* for me.

      1. I put potato in. It’s food. It’s necessary and potatoes are so tasty. You can always change after you have had a nibble

        1. Some potatoes are tasty. Some are bland. I like Wilja for mash and Maris Piper or King Edwards for chips and roasts. Fortunately, my neighbours, the local farmers, grow both and they allow me to dig up what I need. On Christmas Eve, I buy a bag of Maris Piper from them with a bottle of Grouse for letting me walk their land with Hudson.

          Countryside trading.

          Wonderful.

  18. I have noticed before now that my brain is wired up back to front. After yesterday’s difficulty, I found this easy enough. **/***
    I was briefly distracted by 18a in considering circuit for the second part. I liked 4d and 16d but favourite is 27a. Thanks to all.

  19. Another tricky puzzle following this weeks trend and a ***/*** for me
    Remembered seeing B and B on a black and white TV ,which helped but I didn’t think the clue quite worked.
    13a was obvious but thanks to DT for the ‘bow parse’
    Last in was 20 which did take a while-an excellent clue.
    Favourite was 9d closely followed by 4d.
    Cricket soon!

  20. Another tricky puzzle today but fairly clued. Liked the away wins at 4 down. Surely with the deeper voice Ben is older than Bill at 7 down. Ta to all.

  21. What a difference a day makes. This was much more on my level, although some may think it was a bit too easy for a Friday. 7d was my favourite. I used to love Bill and Ben as a child along with Andy Pandy. I used to think that Andy was a girl because off the ruffle round his neck. The name meant nothing to me at that age. I didn’t know anyone called Andy. Thank you setter and Deep Threat.

  22. I know it’s all in the eye of the beholder but i am at a loss to see how todays excellent puzzle can rated as more difficult than yesterdays horror! Many excellent clues today inc 20d, 26a and 27a. 4d was the toughest clue for which i am grateful to Mrs B for an explanation.
    Thx to all
    **/*****

  23. Going for the Pedant of the Day Award shouldn’t the definition in 12a be “….something explosive”?
    Thank you to all involved for a very enjoyable challenge.

  24. ***/***. Most of this went in smoothly but slowed a lot with the last few. Couldn’t parse 8d which I bunged in so I’m grateful for DTs explanation – thanks. My favourite was 4d. Thanks to the setter for an enjoyable puzzle.

  25. This one took me ages but I enjoyed it. I thought we might see and hear some Thunderclap Newman in the hints for 26a. Perhaps DT is too youthful to remember 1969.
    I found Bill and Ben to be rather scary when I was a little boy, and I was always concerned about the gardener coming back early from his lunch and catching the Flowerpot Men and Little Weed mid-adventure. Such concerns would keep me awake at nights.
    Thanks to Miss Terri Setter and DT.

  26. Completed west side of this fairly quickly but found the east more challenging and had to look at the hints for 8d and 13a. (Loved being reminded of watching Bill and Ben with my children when they were little!) Also required help with 20a.
    Altogether, though, I was relieved to have my confidence restored after yesterday’s failure so many thanks to the setter and to DT for much needed hints. We’re so fortunate to have those who commit regularly to providing such helpful and entertaining hints.

  27. I enjoyed this one. Thank you for the hint for 20d – couldn’t work out why this was the answer. Favourite 19d. I may try a Toughie now.

  28. Best thing about this puzzle for me was the Bill and Ben clip, thank you Deep Threat. Other than that, I didn’t enjoy this as much as everyone else, finding it a bit of a minefield. If there was a chance to pen in the wrong answer I did, potato for 1d, curtain for 13a, and circuit for the second word in 18a. All quickly recognized as wrong, but now crossword looks a right mess with all the corrections. I got 1a right away, which for me is usually a sign that it will be downhill from there on. I’ll blame it on the early morning run to a different supermarket to get our Weetabix.

    1. Thanks for a super puzzle Zandio, enjoyed 4d in particular, and 20d where the wordplay and definition were absolutely spot on!

  29. I really enjoyed this one! Got off to a good start as I spotted 14a while I was printing it off.
    As others have commented I sometimes find it easier to guess from the checkers and then work backwards.
    I would put it in the **1/2/****. COTD contenders as 1a, 27a and 7d. Thanks to DT and Zandio!

  30. It was there, I did it, sort of puzzle for me. Agree with Jane fairly straightforward for a Friday but Friday is always at least 3* for me. Versus, against, playing, when I see United v X any, or all, come to mind.
    Looked at the Toughie now I can see it it. But I don’t get it – my admiration for those who can do, and enjoy, the crossword equivalent of an ironman. I’ll stick with the 10Ks or occasional half marathons the back pager serves up.
    COTD 4d, me to a T in crosswordland. I am reminded of the 2 Ronnie’s & Stephen Fry remake of the classic 60’s sketch:

    https://youtu.be/0JSahEDRjvw

    Thanks to setter and DT for review.
    Weather turned sunny so it’s down the beach with Biggles

  31. I found this the easiest solve of the week 🤗 **/*** Favourites 27a and 7d (I think that it is an age thing 🤔) Thanks to DT and to the Setter, have a nice weekend 😬 ⛈

  32. Hard work, but enjoyable. Some very contrived clues, which were all the more satisfying to solve without resorting to the hints.

    Clue of the day was 9d for me.

    ***/***

  33. We had met Bill and Ben before so we did get that one although it took some head-scratching as did the wordplay for 21a.
    Enjoyable solve and much appreciated.
    Thanks Zandio and DT.

  34. A relatively straightforward puzzle for Friday. Certainly much better than yesterday’s disaster for me which I gave up on completely. Several of the clues I could not get the parsing for them but bunged the answers in anyway and looked at the hints after the puzzle was completed for the explanation.
    ***/*** clues of mention 18a, 25a, 7d & 17d with winner 7d for nostalgic reasons

    Thanks to setter and DT

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