DT 29503 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29503 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29503 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club

Hosted by Tilsit

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

Morning everyone from a sunny autumnal morning in Warrington.

Normal service resumed next week hopefully. This is my last Saturday before redundancy and I am a free agent.

Today’s teaser I suspect is probably by our new kid on the block and is quite a stern challenge, possibly straying towards Tuesday Toughie territory. A few clues that were quite tricky and needed some thought.

I’ve tried to cover them as best as I can. I have given an extra clue hint to get people to behave themselves and not post additional hints or answers.

John Halpern, our Sunday setter and Dada in Toughies, has been running regular Zoom sessions discussing his Guardian puzzles. Next Thursday he turns to Telegraph Towers and is hosting a Q and A session with Chris Lancaster at 7:30pm. Expect a few others to be lurking around.

You can sign up here: https://www.johnhalpern.co.uk/

He’s on duty today in the FT as Mudd, Puck is the Gaurdian Prize slot and for me, best of all Micawber, under his Morph guise is in the Independent.

Links here:

Morph: https://puzzles.independent.co.uk/games/cryptic-crossword-independent/#!202010

Mudd: https://d1e00ek4ebabms.cloudfront.net/production/uploaded-files/xwd16616_2410-75b89883-67c9-4889-b959-947ad712f13b.pdf

Puck: https://crosswords-static.guim.co.uk/gdn.cryptic.20201024.pdf

Remember to play nicely, don’t ask for answers that are not hinted at, and don’t post answers not hinted at. There are reasons why we do this, so respect them. If you don’t like it, there are places you can go and get them.

As is usual for the weekend prize crosswords, an assortment of clues, including some of the more difficult ones, have been selected and hints provided for them.

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.

Some hints follow.


1a Change characters in French poem about Charlie (6)
A way of saying in in French, plus a type of poem, with the letter represented by Charlie in the NATO Phonetic alphabet tucked in.

4a Crazy lustful type swallows new plant with supposed magical powers (8)
The same device used as in 1 ac; a word for crazy and a  lustful, disreputable person has the abbreviation for new inside.

9a Court may be held in this but this can’t be held in court (6)
Two definitions here, both sort of cryptic. A Latin phrase when a court meets in secret, and something that is forbidden in court.

11a Academic gets caught replacing fine computer part (9)
Be careful to get this the right way round. The definition you are looking for is underlined. The name for an academic has the abbreviation for fine replaced by one meaning caught

14a Who’ll save a great pile taint loan administered with corruption (8,5)
The organisation that protects ‘piles’ Is an anagram of TAINT LOAN plus a word for the corruption of metal.

17a After long time volunteers will face politicians — they should secure delivery (7,6)
The Latin word for after, plus a word meaning long time, plus the standard crossword abbreviation for volunteers, plus one for politicians.

23a Group of soldiers throwing out head of government showing restraint (9)
Remove the letter G (head of government) from an unusual word for a group of soldiers.

26a Reverberating snore disturbed TV presenter (8)
An anagram (disturbed) of SNORE plus the name of the rehabilitated half of a TV presenting duo. He’s always the one on the left.

27a Mean, like a jellyfish? (6)
If ‘like a stick’ is ‘sticky’ then like a jellyfish could be this….


1d Flee with directions leading to headland (6)
The abbreviation for two directions at right angles to each other, plus the name for a type of headland.

2d More than one camp friend of Clegg coming to North Dakota in America (9)
The name for a friend of Clegg in a TV comedy series, plus the abbreviation for America with that of one of the states inside.

5d Noted alarms going off in weapons site (11)
The name of a famous weapons establishment that provoked marches in the 1960’s and led to the establishment of CND is an anagram of NOTED ALARMS.

6d Unassertive type raised cap, cross (7)
This, I think, is quite tricky. Take the name for a cap (the first part of a Scottish one can be one – see the BRB) plus the name for a type of cross and reverse the lot.

8d Condemn what director’s paid? (8)
A short word for a company director plus what they earn.

12d E.g. Hamlet on TV provides diversion (11)
What the brand Hamlet was and probably still is, plus a name for a TV.

16d Key watering-hole that’s out of this world? (5,3)
A description of a hostelry near the Milky Way, perhaps, is something you may have just pressed.

22d Geography student’s requirement finally reduced (5)
A two word phrase meaning finally, minus its last letter and then joined together.

Thanks to our setter and I’ll see you next Saturday!

The Crossword Club is now open.

Music today is this splendid new release and a stupendous video…

and if you like that, you’ll adore this….

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

As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully – they are not subject to debate or discussion. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted. In all cases the administrator’s decision is final.

If you don’t understand, or don’t wish to comply with, the conventions for commenting on weekend prize puzzles then save yourself (and me) a lot of trouble and don’t leave a comment.  BD

The Quick Crossword pun: Al Gore+rhythm=algorithm

105 comments on “DT 29503 (Hints)

  1. I have to admit defeat today, I filled most of the grid in *** time, but came completely to a halt in the NE. I didn’t know 4a or 13a, and those left me without 7d & 8d.

    A great coincidence that 14a appears in banner headlines on the front page!

    I did really like 27a, my COTD by a mile.

    Thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

    (You might want to tweak the hint for 4a, it contains part of the answer)

    1. I don’t think I would have got 14a apart from the item I had just read. Couldn’t believe it!

  2. This was a bit of a challenge. The setter certainly seems to have come up with an unusual formula. Some extremely good clues, 2d, 12d and 5d. ***/**** Favourite is 8d. That one took me a while but it’s a good construction. Thanks to all.

  3. After my personal debacle yesterday, I regrouped and found this brilliant prize puzzle one of the best in memory. Even the UK (media) references were gettable for me, and I breezed to a ** finish. Splendid winners atop the podium: 11a, 9a, 8d/6d (tie). Thanks to Tilsit (for the hints and the Dvorak) and to today’s compiler. ** / *****

  4. That was very hard today. Finished with the help of the hints but too hard to be considered particularly pleasurable. I thought 12d was rather unfair needing a real leap of faith to solve.
    Thx for the hints

  5. I thought I was never going to get a start on this tricky puzzle but, once I had made a breakthrough the clues began to fall into place and it was quite enjoyable (2*/4*), I liked 17a, which was well camouflaged, 9a (very sly), 15d and 12d (although it was a bit dated maybe). Many thanks to Tilsit for the review and the compiler, whose original style seemed unfamiliar. It’s cloudy and drizzly here in South Oxfordshire so I finally dug up my outdoor tomatoes, carefully collecting the green ones for chutney making.

  6. Really enjoyable and at the same time different from the usual Saturday style of puzzle. I found a lot of the clues needed some sideways thinking with a resulting “Doh” when the penny dropped. Took longer than usual but got there with just a bit of online help.

    I think 12d was one of the best clues I have seen in a while and 27a made me smile with the wordplay.

    Be good to find out who the Setter is? Thanks Tilsit for the excellent hints.

  7. Saturday’s have been getting a bit trickier recently and this was a bit of a brain teaser for me. I can see the lustful type in 4a but didn’t realise it was french but I got there in the end. Some clues (5d 12d) indicate a setter of a certain age but others (26a) may indicate a younger setter. Very topical 14a gets the nod from 6d and 8d
    Thanks to Tilsit and setter for an enjoyable blog and puzzle.
    I too have an appointment with tomatoes – nothing more to ripen after the clocks change

    P.S. Loved the music it goes very nicely with my new Springsteen album

    1. AFAIK, the word for “lustful type” in 4a comes from Old English (with “hell” appended). The French is ‘un dé***ché’ [I hope the letter substitutions help me avoid the naughty step].

  8. Really enjoyed this, took a bit of time to get onto wavelength and then fell into place quite quickly.
    I do like clues that make me laugh/smile.
    Many thanks to setter.
    Tilsit thanks for clearing up some parsing issues I had.
    12d has given me an ear worm.

  9. I’m with Robert inasmuch as I thought this an absolute cracker & certainly the best Saturday prize for some time. I too breezed through most of it & with the odd head scratcher completed in 2.5* time. Difficult to select a podium from such an assortment of excellent clues but I’ll plump for 9a with 2&16d in the medal positions & a bunched field just missing out.
    Many thanks to the setter & to Tilsit for the review, music & other crossword links.

  10. Hmmm…..a few v tough clues for me in this curates egg……got there in the end but needed the hint to parse 2d…..I thought of Nick C but couldn’t make sense of it given his change of job….I don’t watch the show in question so obscure for me though I realise it is much loved….the Hamlet reference is also one that would I think escape younger solvers….anyway, enjoyed the struggle, so thanks to all

  11. Definitely continuing the trend of trickier SPPs but with the usual enjoyment – completed at a fast canter – 3.5*/4*.
    A couple of comments on the hints:
    4a – I do not believe, nor does the BRB, that the lustful, disreputable person is a French word.
    11a – The hint seems to have stopped in mid-thought.
    Candidates for favourite – 9a, 17a, and 3d – and the winner is 17a.
    Thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

    1. Tilsit obviously doesn’t have any experience of the type of person needed in 4a, hence muddling up his French ones with his English ones. I’ve taken the liberty of amending that hint and finishing off the one for 11a

  12. I don’t know what it is but, like last Saturday’s prize, I ended up with answers that seem to make no sense but are the only ones possible with the checkers. I find this frustrating because as a rule it is known the answer is correct from the parsing. This was a hard one and I struggled with it needing a few hints to get me to the finish line.

    However, I did like 17a and that is my COTD.

    Many thanks to the setter and Tilsit. I bet you’re looking forward to retirement.

  13. In the context of the lead story today, the clue and answer to 14a were apposite and had me laughing out loud.

  14. Lovely coincidence as regards 14a. Since these puzzles are submitted weeks or months in advance it is nothing more than that. Overall this was probably the hardest Prize Puzzle for some time and took some teasing out, particularly the NE corner. My favourite was the simple 27a, although the aforementioned 14a was brilliant because of the contemporaneous nature of the news item.

    Great fun all round, a worthy prize puzzle and thanks to our Saturday setter and Tilsit.

    1. I agree that 14a is a coincidence but there is also another answer in another headline. One coincidence I can accept but two? That’s spooky! :grin:

      1. Reading all the comments, I was beginning to think the whole thing was ‘just me’ but I do agree with you about the surface reading of 14a

    2. Somewhat reminiscent of Leonard Dawe’s DT crosswords before D-Day that raised some alarm when: ‘Dieppe’, ‘Gold, ‘Mulberry’, ‘Neptune’, ‘Omaha’, ‘Overlord’, Sword’ and ‘Utah’ appeared as answers.

  15. An amusing story about the place in 5d …

    In the early ’80s I carried a government ‘warrant’ that permitted me unescorted access to ‘Prohibited places’, and I was a frequent visitor there and to ROF Burghfield.

    One June day, though, my car was stopped at the gate and I was instructed to park and wait on foot for an escort – the person I liaised with. He duly arrived to drive us to the building we used.

    I queried the increase in security and by way of unvoiced explanation we detoured past a building surrounded by a triple row of 20′ high fencing, the inner ring electrified and the space between the outer rings patrolled 24/7 by armed guards (“MOD Plod”) with dogs.

    The building was low rise and the Chad figure painted on the roof was still visible, despite the attentions of a chap with a scrubbing brush.

    Also clear to read was the caption underneath: “22 woz ‘ere”. 🤦‍♂️🤣😎

    1. We lived in Burghfield from 1967 – 1982. At the height of the Cold War we decided no point in investing in a shelter as we would surely be the first to go up in the Big Bang. 5d was nearby, and such a pretty village, a shame the government built the other place there. My husband Peter also had clearance for 5d and visited there in the 60s.

      1. Later analysis suggested that the Russian ICMBs of the day would either: misfuse and not detonate (of course, spewing radio-active fissile material over the area of impact), be misled by the magnetic anomaly over the North Pole and land well off target (to the misfortune of those around the new Ground Zero), or miss by a mile or so (potentially important for a ground burst and especially for a penetrator). Of course, with multiple warheads targeted on a small area, a few misses are not important (hence multiple-targeting).

        A story that was not unusual in those times …

        In the NAAFI at Burghfield one lunchtime, the talk around our testosterone-heavy table turned to the “four minute warning” and what we would do if it sounded ‘now’. All but one of the young male heads turned towards a table occupied by four young (and attractive) WRAF aircraftwomen. However, one at our table was looking instead at another table occupied by a WRAF Flight Sergeant renowned as a harridan. When asked, incredulously, “Why?”, he replied simply that, “No-one else is.”

    2. When I was in the RAF, I was posted to Boscombe Down, which was the experimental aircraft testing site. When I reported to the RAF administration unit attached to the establishment I was told I had to get a pass to enter the main site. I dutifully went to the guardroom in the perimeter fence that surrounded the compound and asked for a pass. The sergeant told me I had to go to a certain building for the pass and he pointed it out. It was inside the compound that I needed a pass to enter.
      What followed was like something out of a novel by Kafka!

      1. Not at all atypical.

        I have to say that my “warrant” gave me some pleasure when directed into a lay-by to take part in a traffic survey. I was on my way to one Prohibited place to another Prohibited place and the spotty Herbert conducting the survey was adamant that I answer his questions, despite there being no compulsion in law so to do … something he had clearly missed in his instructions.

        When I continually refused to answer he summoned the constable who had directed me into the lay-by (at that time, only a constable in uniform had the power to require a moving motor vehicle to stop). The bobby asked me why I was refusing to answer what where two very simple questions: where I was going and where I’d come from.

        I produced the “warrant” and after a brief glance, the constable turned to the spotty Herbert and brusquely told him he was an idiot, then turned to me, saluted, and wished me on my way with a: “Drive safely, Sir, and thank you.”

  16. I shall echo the words of Steve Cowling in that I needed a few tips from Tilsit, and I found that several of my answers were the only ones possible but I wasn’t sure at all of the parsing. All good fun, nonetheless… <-nonetheless turns up a lot in crosswords, doesn't it?

    *I saw Hawkwind and Roy Harper (and others) at 5d at a free festival on Easter Monday 1972.

    It took four days for a leading motor car dealership to obtain confirmation that my replacement water pump was covered by the warranty. It is scheduled to be done next Wednesday so I will have been car-less for eight days. Luckily H's teeny Yaris will get us about until then. First world problems I know, and in the context of the wider issues facing us all, I should not complain (too much).

    Thanks to Tilsit and the setter

    1. My husband’s cousin was a member of Hawkwind but the only time I saw him play was in an impromptu band of locals at our wedding reception in September 1982. He played the flute and no-one noticed until we looked at the photos a couple of weeks later that he had a shirt on covered in drawings of naked ladies!

      1. I bumped into Lemmy once while the band were recording at a studio next door to the fish ‘n chip shop in Leatherhead
        Keenly told him I loved the music and wanted to form a rock band
        He opened his bag and showed me the contents – four cans of Special Brew, a bottle of vodka and a little rectangular wrap, adding the wise words – ‘Don’t do it’
        So I didn’t

        1. I interviewed Paul Jones of Manfred Man back in the 80s. He was a charming and friendly. He had no bottles of booze or little packets on him.

          1. Saw him playing Sky Masterson in an early 80s National Theatre production of Guys&Dolls. He was superb.

  17. A real hotchpotch today encompassing everything from the novel to the old faithfuls with the occasional dreadful surface read (eg 14a) thrown in for good measure.
    16d made me laugh so gets my vote for today.

    Thanks to our setter and to Tilsit for the hints, copious instructions and very enjoyable musical interludes.

    1. I agree about the surface read but the topicality saves it for me
      I loved 16d too and what would I give to shove up to the counter of The Mos Eisley Cantina and share a beer with Han Luke and Ben

  18. 2*/4.5*. Very enjoyable with 12d my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Tilsit.

  19. A really good and very entertaining SPP – I’m just relieved to read that others found it tricky.
    Two of my main hold-ups were TV related – we’ve never watched the relevant programme in 2d and so the only ‘Clegg’ that came to mind was a political one (Mr Google knew though) and I always forget the 26a presenter.
    I don’t know anything about cars so had to ask husband about ‘vintage Fords’ in 13a even though the answer had to be right.
    Lots of excellent clues including 6 and 12d. My favourite was either 27a or 16d – they both made me laugh.
    Thanks to whoever set this one and to Tilsit.
    Miserable weather in Oxford – off to have a go at the NTSPP with a completely clear conscience!

      1. See what you mean – I’ve got nine answers so far which isn’t really enough to get going – might have to give up for a bit . . .

  20. Solved alone and unaided but could not parse either 2d (forgot all about the friend of Clegg) and 12d (another case of failing memory) so needed Tilsit’s help.
    Quite a tough one for me.
    Took me ages.
    Miserable day up here in Dundee…..

    Thanks to Tilsit and to the setter

    1. I watched the Susan Calman travelogue that included Dundee. I really want to visit the V&A there, The Mackintosh Oak Room needs a good coat of looking at. Maybe even a nicecupoftea and a piece of shortbread

      1. Well, I hope you enjoy it more than I did…I have to say that I was seriously underwhelmed by it.
        Poorly displayed exhibits poorly annotated.
        As for the tea room…..I have eaten in more comfortable and welcoming school dining rooms. It looks like the inside of a garden shed which could do with a bit more sandpapering and a coat of varnish. Sorry to be so negative but that’s my view.
        Maybe others who have visited will present a more favourable review

        Discovery Point and the RRS Discovery though…there’s somewhere worth a visit. And Verdant Works for industrial history. Sensation Science Museum, very hands on and exciting for kids (and big kids).
        MacManus Art Gallery and Museum also well worth a visit .
        End of travelogue

        1. My first reply seems to have vanished into the ether. I will, however, take on board your suggestions for when (and if) travel is allowed again. My Dundonian yearnings will settle for the odd slice of your excellent cake or a dab of Dundee Marmalade on my toast.

            1. Mrs C comes from Arbroath and she visited Dundee Theatre many times. She took me there when we first met and told me about “Jam, Jute and Jerusalem”!

              1. I have been on a bit of a Dundonian Wikipedia dive -a very interesting place I had forgotten all about the Jute business (despite a very boringly taught combined history/geography lesson in my youth) and Mrs C was probably referring to Jam Jute and Journalism as one of Dundee’s claims to fame is being the home of DC Thomson, The Beano, The Dandy The Sunday Post and therefore The Broons and my personal favourite Oor Wullie and his old bucket.
                I wonder if Marcelo Bielsa the manager of “my” team Leeds Utd, realises his favoured bucket was stolen from a wee Scottish laddie.
                Excuse my ramblings I have just been on an epic clock changing marathon and have been googling away at the so called “extra” hour I have created.

  21. 2d made me laugh. 9a went straight in, the longer ones were soon in too. 8d was LOI after the helpful hints.

  22. I will include your suggestions if and when we can ever visit again. Until then I will have to settle for an occasional slice of Dundee cake or a smear of Dundee marmalade on my toast.

  23. Quite tricky today and I finished by putting the only word I could find that matched the checkers into one clue. Most unsatisfactory as I have no idea if it is right, it doesn’t look it, and what it could be if it isn’t.

    Thanks again to Tilsit for another sterling job and to the setter for a good workout. Will have to wait for the review to find the solution to the mystery clue.

  24. Wow this took a lot of teasing out. The NE took the longest time ever. 2d was very clever although I had to ask husband the characters in the TV programme. I’m a volunteer with 14a but their latest shinanigans I probably won’t return, such a shame as I love doing it. Highlight of the week in a moment – Tesco delivery, how sad is that! Thanks to all and stay safe.

  25. Found this reasonably easy once started in NW corner.
    I have a word for 13a and I think I understand the Ford part but I still cannot make sense of it.
    I liked the answer to 12d. I had a different word first off.

    1. You might well have the wrong word, the right answer is an obvious fit … but then the questions are easy when you know the answers. 😎

      1. Thanks. I had the wrong answer to 6d. It all makes sense now.
        I used another reference to Ford to arrive at a word for13a.

        1. Still don’t get it! I guessed the shrinking type but couldn’t make it fit in. Consequently 4a is still confusing me. I have no idea what the plant with magical powers cold be. Having seen the picture, I know I certainly don’t have one of those in my garden 😄.

  26. My first post after following the blog for many years. An enjoyable solve and fairly straightforward despite a bit of a hold up in
    NE – guess I was just on the right wavelength today. Thanks to BD and all the hinters for rekindling my interest in cryptics.

  27. I enjoyed this but do not like clues like 26ac and 2dn (especially 26ac – never seen TV presenter, never will!). I believe that the answers should be derivable from the clues and not GK (especially celebrity). There could be many alternative ways of clueing the last 3 letters in 26ac that would make the crossword accessible to all.

    That said I did like 9ac, 12dn, 16dn.

    Thanks to setter and Tilsit for the blog.

    PS forgot to mention 8dn appeared in Paul’s (Mudd) crossword 28267 in Guardian last Saturday but with a different wordplay.

  28. Sorry but this was disappointing for the prize puzzle with some clues relying on old tv knowledge – and I also thought that 26a was a little cruel. Thanks to Tilset for the hints

  29. I’m late starting today, a shame as I’m totally at sea and would need too much time to solve this. I have a total of four answers, that has to be a record, I don’t think I’ve ever needed hints with so few answers. C,est la guerre!
    Not your fault Madame setter that I’m dim today, but much gratitude to Tilsit for his hints and music.

  30. Exceedingly slow-moving to begin with but surprised myself by coming through in the end. Bunged in wrong magical organism for 4a which caused hold up around that area. 8d director is not always first four letters. I liked 16d although think it may be a bit of a chestnut. Rather too rocky to be enjoyable. Thank you Mysteron (have we met before?) and Tilsit to whom all good wishes for a happy and healthy retirement.

  31. Found this very tough & needed electronic help for 4a which I had never heard of. Some good clues of which 2d & 12d get joint COTD. Well into *** time agree with comments on 14a so only ** / *** enjoyment
    I was trying to connect a politician in 2d. Then connected the series – I find myself more & more identifying with parts of all 4 stereotypes! (except can’t remember them getting ill amazingly).
    Thanks to Mr Ron & Tilsit for hints.

  32. Like some others, I ground to a halt with a few in the top right corner. Eventually I solved 13a which allowed me to sort out the rest. Overall I enjoyed the puzzle and in particular 16d and 17a, but my favourite is 9a. Thanks to the setter for providing entertainment during a dark and dreary afternoon in Leeds, and also to Tilsit for providing the hints and music. The video of Paris makes me want to visit – maybe next year (I’ll live in hope).

  33. Thank you very much for the music and videos – just what I needed after making heavy weather of the puzzle.

  34. Having spent much of a wet Shropshire day putting up fairy lights at one of our local visitor attractions, I didn’t get chance to look at today’s prize puzzle until just before tea. I settled down with a ‘tinny’ and my pen and completed in very good time indeed. Having since read the comments I began to wonder if indeed I had been solvolving a different puzzle, but no twas the same one. Thoroughly enjoyable and no complaints here from me for sure. I thought 12d was very clever and it raised a big smile, but for me 17a takes top prize. Thanks to both setter and Tilsit.

      1. I agree. “solvolving” is more than a mere solve. It requires much more effort and is used with difficult cryptics. 😁

        1. Absolutely 😁. Trouble is that I often revise what I have first written, but don’t always edit it properly. That was pre malt time too 😉😉

            1. I used to like a grain called Cameron Brig, but that seems to have disappeared off the shelves. Tonight it’s my last couple of drams of MacAllen.

  35. *****/***. Quite a tough challenge. Got there in the end but not helped by misspelling the French detective – it was ages before I realized. I didn’t like some clues at all (e.g. 14a & 12d) but others were quite neat (17a&16d). Thanks to the setter and Tilsit. A beautiful autumn morning with clear blue skies and a sharp frost. There’s snow on the passes causing havoc on the Coquihalla.

  36. Just made it back before curfew. Only 20 customers as in France, we are not used to eat early. I don’t think the habits will change over the weekend so not sure if we will open in the evening anymore.
    In today’s crossword, I thankfully knew all the GK although 5d was dragged from a distant memory.
    The presenter in 26a appeared quite often lately and the series in 2d was regularly referred to in the past.
    Thanks to the setter and to Tilsit.

  37. Well after reading the comments above I’m not sure which camp I’m in this evening, boot camp probably. I found this really difficult and parsed it all so I shouldn’t really complain. Nobody said life was easy. So I will choose a favourite, 27a for its humour. Thanks to the setter and Tilsit.

  38. There must be something wrong with my brain as I got through this one without too much difficulty apart from 4a – got it by seduction but never heard of plant! Need to get back to last saturdays now as really struggling with that one.

  39. Three cheers – I’ve finished it at last! The Welsh lockdown must have affected my brain completely because in spite of Tilsit’s very helpful hints and extensive use of the e-gizmo it has taken me until now to
    complete it – but at least we have nothing else to do here in Wales except decide which items of our
    shopping are necessary. Anyway thanks to Tilsit and the setter, another one who this week gave my
    brain plenty of exercise.

  40. Completely stumped on how to parse 13a! Have put in the only answer that fits – will be interested to see the solution on Friday… Thanks to Tilsit for all the hints :)

  41. Hello, as a newcomer to Daily Telegraph crosswords (done on an iPad) can anyone tell me where complete solutions to past puzzles can be found, obviously after closing date for prize crosswords. I would just like to see where I went wrong….Thank you.

    1. Welcome to the blog. If you put the puzzle number into the Google search the site option on the right side of the home page, you will get hints to that puzzle and the solutions. If you look at the prize puzzle reviews, you get full explanations of the clues

      My review of this crossword will be published at 9 am tomorrow

      1. Thank you! I knew the full solution had to be there somewhere!! Keep up the great work. Harry

  42. We used to really enjoy the Saturday Prize Crossword, but this has decended into a nasty school exam, leading to much family stress. Please can we politely encourage the DT editorial team to return to a fun Saturday experience, without having to see the teacher on Monday morning to explain our poor performance!

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