DT 29630 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29630

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29630

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty ** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone, and welcome to Tuesday. I found this offering a steady solve, helped along by some echoes of recent Tuesday puzzles.  A pleasant experience overall. 

In the hints below most indicators are italicized, and underlining identifies precise definitions and cryptic definitions. Clicking on the answer buttons will reveal the answers. In some hints hyperlinks provide additional explanation or background. Clicking on a picture will enlarge it or display a bonus illustration and a hover (computer) or long press (mobile) might explain more about the picture. Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.

 

Across

1a    Talk about second copper infiltrating Norfolk town (7)
DISCUSS:  The single letter for second and the chemical symbol for copper inserted together in (infiltrating) a Norfolk market town 

5a    Garment missing last pocket (7)
TROUSER:  A garment that's a plural is missing its last letter to yield an informal verb meaning pocket or appropriate 

9a    Kept trimmed? Not husband (5)
SAVED:  Trimmed closely minus the genealogical abbreviation for husband (not husband)

10a   Knowledge of mostly easy answer condemned (9)
AWARENESS:  An anagram (condemned) of all but the last letter (mostly) of EAS[y] and ANSWER

11a   Observe the French ship at all events (10)
REGARDLESS:  Link together observe or watch, "the" in French, and a usual [steam]ship 

12a   Too advanced group of musicians (4)
ALSO:  The single letter for advanced with a group of musicians based in the Barbican Centre 

14a   Devon temples demolished making housing estates? (12)
DEVELOPMENTS:  An anagram (demolished) of DEVON TEMPLES. The ? indicates that the definition is by example 

18a   Walk disregarding a learner's state of health (12)
CONSTITUTION:  A regular walk taken for the benefit of one's health minus (disregarding) both A from the clue and the single letter indicating a learner driver 

21a   Detective Inspector goes over each thought (4)
IDEA:  The reversal (goes over) of the abbreviation for Detective Inspector is followed by the abbreviation for each 

22a   Manufacturing trouble east of river (10)
INDUSTRIAL:  Trouble or ordeal following (east of, in an across clue) a river in Asia 

25a   Raving loony in Ghent hugging American (9)
ENTHUSING:  An anagram (loony) of IN GHENT containing (hugging) an abbreviation for American 

26a   Filipinos essentially packing trunks (5)
NOSES:  The first two words of the clue are hiding (packing) the answer

27a   Pond-dweller bit European (7)
TADPOLE:  A bit or small amount with a person from a country in Central Europe 

28a   Doctor, turning sweet, almost put bandage on (7)
DRESSED:  The single-letter abbreviation used for doctor in academic degrees is followed by the reversal (turning) of all but the last letter (almost) of sweet or pudding. I can't see the required abbreviation listed in Chambers, Collins, or the Oxford Dictionary of English, but it is in the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary   

 

Down

1d    Fancy gentleman wearing flower (6)
DESIRE:  A synonym of gentleman inserted in (wearing) a Scottish river ("flower", read here whimsically as something that flows)

2d    Wild herb covering third of valley (6)
SAVAGE:  A herb that goes well with pork containing (covering) two consecutive letters of the six in (a third of) VALLEY 

3d    Below a den, hunter shot (10)
UNDERNEATH:  An anagram (shot) of A DEN HUNTER 

4d    Wash unusually large item of clothing (5)
SHAWL:  An anagram (unusually) of WASH with the clothing abbreviation for large 

5d    Ship aims to leave international harbour (9)
TRANSPORT:  Aims a weapon minus the single letter for international ( … to leave international) is followed by another word for harbour

6d    Some more volunteers picked up six balls (4)
OVER:  The answer is hidden reversed (some … picked up, in a down clue) in the remainder of the clue. The definition is crickety

7d    Growing rat eating very much (8)
SWELLING:  A verb synonym of rat or grass containing (eating) an informal intensifier meaning "very much"

8d    Person's worried prior to European reaction (8)
RESPONSE:  An anagram (worried) of PERSON'S followed by the single letter for European 

13d   Current chap consuming alcohol before church -- that's of concern (10)
IMPORTANCE:  Concatenate the physics symbol for electric current, a chap or male person containing (consuming) a fortified wine, and the abbreviation for the Church of England 

15d   Wide, costly piano exchanged for tuba, initially (9)
EXTENSIVE:  Costly or pricey with the musical abbreviation for piano exchanged for the first letter (initially) of TUBA 

16d   Stress about one day's mishap (8)
ACCIDENT:  Stress or emphasis containing (about) both the Roman one and the single letter for day

 

17d   Ten Verdi works turned up (8)
INVERTED:  An anagram (works) of TEN VERDI 

19d   Avoids  girls (6)
MISSES:  A rather straightforward double definition 

20d   Finished chapter and left, thus upsetting editor (6)
CLOSED:  Chain together the single letter for chapter, the single letter for left, the reversal (upsetting, in a down clue) of a synonym of thus, and the abbreviation for editor 

23d   Upper-class rogue I'd regularly prodded (5)
URGED:  The single letter for upper-class with alternate letters (regularly) of ROGUE I'D 

24d   Practically monstrous old writer (4)
HUGO:  All but the last letter (practically) of monstrous or enormous is followed by the abbreviation for old. Read about the writer here 

 

Thanks to our setter for a fun solve. No standout favourite for me today. Did you have one?


The Quick Crossword pun:  AIR + VAN + SCENT = HEAVEN-SENT


135 comments on “DT 29630
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  1. A very straightforward puzzle, with some familiar clues but nonetheless enjoyable for all that. The trickiest clues for me were the short ones 24d and 12a and the latter was my favourite because it had me baffled for a while. Thanks to Mr K and to the compiler.

  2. 1.5*/2.5*. Nothing here to frighten or to excite the horses.

    I was a bit puzzled by 28a. This seems to require either D to be an abbreviation for doctor, for which I can’t find any justification, or for “sweet, almost” to mean removing the last two letters of a word for a sweet as part of a meal, which seems a bit of a stretch.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr. K.

      1. I have a (vague) recollection of a previous discussion on single letter abbreviations that were acceptable in a combination but not on their own.

        Consider this – Jane Smith MD – where the D is clearly understood as an abbreviation for Doctor – would not have D Jane Smith on, for example, a letterhead or business card.

        So, unless our esteemed editor, has relaxed the usage of ‘almost’ to allow the deletion of more than one letter at the end of a word, as used in 28a, D for Doctor on its own does not work.

        1. First time ever I have come across a D denoting doctor.
          So, yes, to apply the almost to it, is a bit stretched in my view.

    1. Nothing wrong with 28a. Dr for doctor. Essed for turning sweet (dessert) almost and if Bob’s not your uncle I’m not Corky.

  3. Thank you to the setter: I found this a nice gentle puzzle, good for this rusty solver to build up confidence. I think it’s the first one I’ve completed by myself since home-schooling ended in England a couple of weeks ago, returning time for crosswords.

    And thank you to Mr K, especially for explaining “aims to leave international”, which I’d failed to parse; and for checking the abbreviation in 28a, which surprised me — especially given the next letter of the answer looks like it should be included in the abbreviation, messing up the sweet.

  4. Straightforward and pleasant puzzle **/***.
    Agree with RD on 28a, it doesn’t quite work.
    Favourite was 1d for the misdirection.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K

  5. Second day in a row with lots to smile about, and lots of ticks. I liked 5a, 18a, 26a ,27a and 16d. I’d better stop there. Thank you setter and Mr Kitty. I’m not sure what sort of an accent you must have to pronounce the quick pun. It doesn’t quite work for me, but it might for others.

  6. Finished in *** time, with no great hold ups. The NW was the last to fall. I hadn’t even noticed the anomaly with 28a, but now agree.

    Many thanks to the compiler and Mr K.

  7. Held up by 7 down and 12 across for a while. Both clever clues. The rest slotted in without too much trouble. There is no Toughie showing in the Newspaper App edition but there are two horrible stories. One about an assault on a young lady and another about the poor seal savaged by a dog. I may stop reading the news pages. Thanks to today’s setter and to Mr Kitty. Pea planting beckons so that is what I shall be doing for the next hour.

    1. I agree – I thought the pictures of the poor seal both sensationalist and distasteful. I quickly turned the page.

    2. The photo of the seal attack seems to show one person with a lead belted around their waist, but it isn’t possible to see if it attached to the dog. the dog looks like it is probably at least part pit bull. Possible scenarios seem to be:
      1. Walker took dog to the seal.
      2. Dog dragged walker to the seal, because it was too powerful for them to control.
      3. Dog snapped weak lead before attacking.
      4. Walker had dangerous dog off the lead before attack.
      At best this is criminal negligence. Lets hope the photo is used to identify the dangerous dog and the dangerous owner, and that the owner is prosecuted and banned from keeping dogs in future.

      1. A horrible set of pictures. I don’t, however, blame the dog, I blame the owner who should never have owned a dog in the first place. You should not get a dog if you are not prepared to put in a great deal of time and effort to train it and get it to obey and love you. Sadly, this dog does have to be put down because it could easily attack again. Next time, however, it could be a young child. The owner needs to be censured severely and I hope the police find her.

        1. Steve
          I have to confess I have never trained my dogs to the level that I could guarantee would obey my every command. So in situations where his natural instincts may take over Biggles is on his lead.
          You may have but I bet in situations like the seal you use belt (well lead) and braces.

          1. I agree with you LROK and I always carry the lead. It must never be forgotten that a dog is just that – a dog – and has animal instincts that could well get the better of him. One of the first things I do when training is to get the dog to come to me no matter whatever he is doing and Hudson is pretty good at this. Do I trust him, though? The answer is no I don’t and if I see potential problem he is straight on the lead.

            1. I haven’t seen this footage as I no longer watch the news, too much sensationalism on all channels. Marra, my younger dog, appears completely uncontrollable whilst on the lead but a paragon on virtue once off it. Surrie, the older one, is the complete opposite. One day I’ll get the complete package.

        2. So glad this wasn’t shown on our news. The dog owner is totally at fault and should be charged. Sadly the dog will also have to pay the ultimate price. I am worried what will happen to the many dogs adopted during the lockdown when their new owners return to work. The stray population will probably explode.

      2. According to reports the dog was off its lead and sprinted some way before it attacked the poor seal Devartly. Being “looked after” by girl”who left the scene with the dog.
        The episode a gruesome reminder to dog owners that many dogs, even “trained” ones can revert to type.
        The publication could perhaps be justified on the grounds of raising dog-owners of their responsibilities. Problem is there have been too many other incidents already that should already.

        1. Sorry last sentence “…..that should have done so already”.
          Remember the video of the guy chasing his Labrador a couple of years ago? It was considered amusing at the time but could have had equally tragic consequences.

          1. It is a salutary warning to all those who got or are thinking of getting a dog as a pet during lockdown. Too many thought it was good idea then found that the adorable little puppy actually pees on the carpet.

      3. I looked long and hard at the photo the dog certainly looked to be in Mastiff pitbull category. The owner should of course be heavily fined. The dog should be destroyed, and I say this as a dog lover.

    3. MP
      I had trouble even loading from the App on my Android device but was OK on my old one that I have as astand-by. There was no Toughie though.
      Uninstalled the App on newer machine & re-installed. App then loaded today’s edition OK complete with Toughie.
      Looks like the programmers have been messing again!

      1. Thanks LROK, that’s worked for me too, can now see the Toughie, whether I can do it or not is another matter!

          1. The Toughie is by Moeraki. At first I thought that he or she was a new setter but then a memory of at least one previous Toughie returned.

      2. Thanks. I’ll give delete and re-install a go. I’ve solved about half in my head from an email CrypticSue sent.

  8. A plethora of anagrams oiled this pleasant offering. My only hesitation was with 12a where I wanted the answer to be trio but couldn’t then deal with 7d: it was only when I solved the latter that the group of musicians referred to became clear still allowing a finish in * time with *** for the fun factor. Thanks to Mr K for his work and the setter for the puzzle.

  9. General knowledge pushed a bit here by writers, orchestras and rivers. Those three brought a shuddering halt to what had been good progress. Good puzzle.

  10. A gentle exercise. I couldn’t quite make 28a work either. Perhaps we’re missing something here. I needed the hints to explain 12a although the answer had to be what it is. Didn’t notice the orchestra tucked on the end. I didn’t know they were based at the Barbican for that matter. Thank you for that. **/*** Favourite 22a. Thanks to all.

  11. For me, today’s puzzle continues the trend of ‘Tricky Tuesday’ with the enjoyment spoiled by a big Hmm over the doctor in 28a – ***/***.
    Candidates for favourite – 18a, 25a, and 7d – and the winner is 25a for the loony anagram indicator.
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K, especially for his research on ‘Doctor.’

  12. Got started early today and managed to finish in good time too. Went wrong with 12A to start with – ‘alto’ is not the right answer! and like others, found 24D the most resistant – and my LOI. **/****

  13. Have got the hump because, as MP points out, there is no Toughie in the Newspaper App edition, so will have to use the Puzzles App where I have to key in each letter twice for some inexplicable reason. Today’s puzzle was all over in ** time & was pleasant enough but nothing to write home about & with 12a providing the only real head scratch. Quite agree that some of the clues had a bit of a familiar feel to them & 28a didn’t really work. Still enjoyable though.
    With thanks to the setter & to Mr K.

      1. On page 18 of the dead tree version which is just how I like it!

        On a personal level, how is the leg? I cut mine badly last summer and had 8 weeks of visiting the practice nurse at our surgery. ( I reckon she was the only one working!) Now I have just a minuscule scar, so hang in there. 🤞 Good luck.

    1. On an iPad, to avoid having to key in each letter twice, go to Settings => General => Keyboard. Then turn OFF Auto-Capitalisation. The downside of this is that a Capital letter is not generated automatically after a full stop when typing.

      1. Thanks Jepi. I’ve always assumed that there must be a solution & it couldn’t possibly be intended to be used this way. The only reason I subscribed (about £35 annually) was to access the Toughie & now that it’s in the Newspaper App the only time I use it is when I’ve run out of steam & need a letter reveal to avoid going to the hints. Hopefully today’s omission is just an aberration.

      2. Jepi

        thank you thank you thank you. i’ve been doing the double key thing for years . My only way round it to date has been to use a bluetooth keyboard with my ipad.. But now i know better !!

        the things you learn eh?

  14. When I eventually got round to this I found it pleasant and relatively straightforward with only a couple in the NW giving pause for thought.
    Definite favourite for me 12a, with 11a runner up.
    2/2.5*
    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr K for the fun.

  15. I, too, was puzzled by 28a as it doesn’t quite work for me. That aside, this was a pleasant enough solve with little to scare the horses. 12a was my favourite for the penny drop moment. Annoyed that we have no Toughie today in the Edition version.

    My thanks to both Misters involved today.

  16. (Regarding the poor seal, mentioned above, I wish I had never seen the photograph – the publication of which was gratuitous)

    Excellent crossword – I really enjoyed working my way through it.

    Let the bells ring out and let joy be unconfined (who locked her up in the first place?) because the supermarket delivery this morning contained ‘smooth’ orange juice. Nobody seems to understand the trauma I have undergone in the last week with these two cartons of orange juice with ‘bits’.
    Ladies and gentlemen, over the last week I have seen the gates of hell before me and beyond those gates is orange juice with bits in it.

    Today’s crossword soundtrack (Todd on Tuesday) ~ Todd Rundgren – Todd

    Thanks to the setter and The Celebrated Mr K.

    1. I suppose you like smooth peanut butter and not crunchy, Terence?

      Give me orange juice with bits and crunchy peanut butter any day. I’m hoping they are what I will find beyond the pearly gates!

      1. Totally agree with you RD. The freshly squeezed orange juice we used to get in Greece had bits in it and was delicious. As for smooth peanut butter, it should not be allowed.

        Don’t worry, Terrance – each to his own. :grin:

        1. I highly recommend juicing your own oranges. The Sage juicer will squeeze every last drop out for you and I have been able to get almost a full glass out of one extra large orange.

      2. I’m banking on a plentiful array of fine wine & single malts that can be enjoyed to excess with no comeback.

        1. I’m just hoping they open the pearly gates and let me in.
          I will have checked my temperature and have a fresh face mask just in case they are required.
          Of course we will have to spend 14 days quarantine presumably in limbo
          😷

        2. My brother reckons that in Heaven he would have complete unlimited access to every music record or tape ever made and the best sound system to listen on. In hell he would have the same unlimited access to the music but no sound system

          1. if i actually make it there, i’m rather hoping there’s more to it than just crunchy peanut butter and orange juice with bits in it. if not, i may change my behaviour.

      3. Absolutely RD – the fibre is only replaced by sugar and smooth peanut butter is like chewing wood glue (I would imagine)

      4. if i actually make it there, i’m sort of hoping there’s more to it than just crunchy peanut butter and orange juice with bits in it. if not, i may change my behaviour.

  17. Lovely puzzle again today.
    Liked 19d.

    Thanks to the setter and to Mr K…..Great pictures as usual, but where are the cats today ? 😾

  18. ‘Pleasant enough’ seems to sum up what many of us thought of this one and I note that Mr K’s feline companions decided to give it a miss. Like others, I queried 28a and can’t say that I have any particular favourite to mention. Not to worry, at least we should all have that Norfolk town firmly embedded in our memory banks by now!

    Thanks to our setter and also to Mr K for the review – the pic at 9a was somewhat disturbing to say the least!

  19. A most entertaining puzzle for a Tuesday. The four letter answers held me up for a while, especially 12a. However, once I sussed it, it became my COTD. Very clever, I thought. I share the thoughts regarding 28a because “D” has never meant doctor to me and mine. I know “well” can mean “very much” as in “well pleased” but I don’t really like it so 7d eluded me for ages.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Mr. K. who seems to be catless today. A shame because I look forward to Tuesdays and the cat pics.

  20. One of those puzzles with clues where its easier just to find the definition than work out the complex wordplay as in 5a, 10a and 5d. Didn’t like 7d much, a bit clumsy.
    **/**
    Thx for the hints esp for explaining the clues above.

  21. Agree with Brian I found 7D a little clumsy but once solved it enabled me to complete 12A which became my cotd

    Thanks to the setter and Mr. K

  22. Found this straightforward once I got tuned in. Agree with RD & others re 28a. To have to consult 4 works of reference to justify a clue is above & beyond. There were too many “lose a letter” clues for me ** / ** with no real stand-out.
    Thanks to setter and Mr K for the unusual cat-less review.

  23. That really was a carefree affair with the North falling painlessly into place and the South then smoothly following suit. Re 28a can sweet “almost” drop 2 letters or is that against cruciverbal regulations? My Fav when the penny dropped was 12a. Thank you Mysteron and MrK.

  24. My first * puzzle, although as Brian mentioned I had the answers but not quite sure of the why. Thanks to Mr K for enlightening me and the setter for boosting my ego ( how long will that last?).

  25. I fairly whistled through this one and only needed one hint to check an answer. I always enjoy anagrams especially when they jump out at you. Lots to like, nothing to dislike.
    Thanks to MrK and Mysteron

  26. When I eventually got round to this I found it pleasant and relatively straightforward with only a couple in the North West giving any pause for thought.
    12a runaway favourite for me with 11a&1d making up the podium
    1.5/3*
    Thanks to the setter and Mr K for the entertainment.

  27. **/**. Not the most entertaining puzzle but reasonably straightforward – I managed to finish it in a reasonable time which justifies my previous statement. Thanks to the setter and Mr K for the review.

  28. Straightforward but fun thank you setter and MrK – I assumed 19d was ‘skirts’ which held me up for a few minutes!

  29. Moderately interesting today. 7d and 12a were my last two in and are my co-favourites. Googled the Norfolk town and decided I must have driven through it on my way from Ipswich to Norwich, many years ago, assuming it was there then. Thanks to Mr K (but where are the kitties?) and today’s setter. ** / ***

  30. 7d and 12a were my last two in and are my co-favourites in this moderately interesting puzzle. Googled the Norfolk town and decided I must have driven through it, many years ago, on my way from Ipswich to Norwich. Thanks to Mr K (but where are the kitties?) and today’s setter. ** / ***

    1. Oops. Sorry folks. The postman’s knock, as he delivered an important package, completely threw me off, and so now you have two of me!

      1. Re postal deliveries a warning to UK residents.
        I took delivery of a Royal Mail parcel last Friday.
        Today I received a text purporting to be from Royal Mail Group Ltd saying they had a parcel for me but could not deliver it as the postage had been underpaid by £2.99. There was then a direction to a very plausible royalmail.????/ link to pay. I was suspicious & sure enough on the official royalmail.com site confirmed there are a number of such scams.
        Royal Mail said they would never send such a text but if there was a problem with a delivery they would inform by note from the sorting office

        1. The saddest thing is that scammers do it because some people fall for these scams thought up by other people who are only slightly less stupid, though ostensibly malign (there are some great YouTube videos of techies hacking scammers whilst they are on the phone to them)
          Very simple – if you buy something, pay for it; if anyone else asks you for money, give them seven letters instead

          1. I take it the seven letters are split 3/4?

            We have numerous calls purporting to be from BT saying there is a problem with our internet. The internet works fine. I just leave the phone on the dresser and let them talk to nobody.

            1. Yes, buz orff – make like the birds and the bees, go forth and multiply (or the 4/3 alternative)
              I love getting scam calls, keeps me amused stringing them along for hours and them getting nowhere
              I’ve dropped my glasses is a good one :grin:

              1. I’ve had 11 spam calls today and it’s only 1800h, still time to get some more. I’ve even had spam calls where the caller ID is my own phone. Where will it ever end.

                1. Mrs. C once had a cold caller who wanted to sell her hearing aids. She kept saying “Can you speak up, I’m deaf?”

                  She took great delight in getting the caller to shout even more loudly.

          1. Some of the scams are convincing. I have had two “Royal Mail” ones recently with no spelling mistakes and good logos. Also when I have been expecting deliveries. Coincidence? If in doubt I do not of course click the link but click on to reply or forward. That reveals the email address from which it is sent which is usually a foreign one ending in be.

    2. You probably didn’t notice the Norfolk town because as you drive towards it, the town ‘disappears’! (Old Christmas cracker riddle.)

  31. Agree with Mr K, a very pleasant puzzle. Big thank you to the setter, so enjoyable to actually do the cryptic without the niggling feeling that the setter was out to thwart me. I too struggled with 12a, wanting to put in trio but knowing it was wrong, and it was last to go in. Identifying the definition is my biggest problem. So thank you to the setter and to Mr K for a lovely start to my day.

  32. As a relative newcomer this was my first full solve for some time, but even I could see that it was straightforward enough. Thanks by the way for an enjoyable and helpful blog, my last resort at midnight.

      1. Thanks for the welcome. My first experience of a crossword was of my Father’s London Times in about 1961 when I was 11. He was stuck on the last clue, which I got. I don’t remember the clue but the answer was Combine Harvester. He said he was impressed, but like everyone who is subject to a casual over-the-shoulder solver, I suspect he may have been a bit miffed! Somewhat downhill for me since then.

        1. Nick. I got into cryptic crosswords due to sibling rivalry. In the late 60s, my bother (2.5 years older than me) used to do the cryptic in the Manchester Evening News every night after work. In those days, the paper was a true evening one and didn’t come through the door till 5.30pm (it’s now a morning paper). Everybody though he was a right clever-clogs. One day, he was stuck on the final clue and I remember it to this day: And yet people sit in them (11). I got the answer (grandstands) and was ever so proud of myself. Funny how you remember little this like that …

    1. Welcome from me as well, Nick. Don’t be a stranger – come back soon because all on here welcome comments.

  33. Well, I thoroughly enjoyed this today even if I also wanted to put trio and then alto in. Some very clever clues. In answer to JB (14) above my leg is (very) slowly improving if I don’t walk on it. Thanks for asking. Last Friday my nurse took a photo of the wound to send to a retired GP in our lane who forwarded it to someone else. Extremely gruesome but the advice is to keep it up all the time. The very worst bit is that David is doing the cooking for which I am very grateful, BUT he keeps tapping out the William Tell Overture with a knife on the sink top, over and over again – it is driving me literally insane. Help!

  34. Two days in a row, now, I’ve been treated to a puzzle I can handle. I did need a little e-help in the NE corner, this appears to be caused by my brain absolutely refusing to remember the answer to 5a. How many times am I going to look that up?
    We haven’t had our musicians at 12a for some time, my fave clue but it took me long enough to solve it.
    Thank you setter for the fun, and thanks Mr. K for the unravelling of some, 5d in particular. Wot, no kitties?

  35. The only problems I had today were the ones that I made “all my own self” – dim, or what?
    I didn’t even notice the slightly dodgy 26a but can see what you all mean now that it’s been pointed out.
    No particular favourite today so thanks to the setter and to Mr K.

  36. I found 99% of this crossword straight forward and enjoyable but 7d, even after solving 12a 😬, makes it a ***/*** for me. I thought 12a tenuous to say the least and in my vocabulary the four letters in sing do not compute 😟 Rant over, favourites 5 & 11a. Thanks to Mr K and to the Setter

  37. Another nice gentle puzzle for a sunny Tuesday morning here on the west coast. **/**** Started at the bottom and the NW was last area in. Got held up there due to wrong answer in 2d, but when I corrected the rest fell into place.
    Favourites today include 1a, 26a, 1d, 6d & 19d with winners 1a & 12a

    Thanks to setter and Mr K

    1. Reading the commentary on 28a, even if the ‘R’ does double duty, what does it matter? The clue clearly defines the definition and I had no problem figuring it out.

      Just my two penn’th worth

      1. It matters because instructions are the essence of a cryptic clue, otherwise a setter can take all sorts of ridiculous liberties

  38. All fairly straightforward apart from my last three clues which I couldn’t get without electrons – 24d, 12a and 7d. I too was puzzled by the missing R in 28a. **/***

  39. Nothing wrong with 28a. Dr for doctor. Essed for turning sweet (dessert) almost and if Bob’s not your uncle I’m not Corky.

    1. Yes, but almost cannot mean remove both R&T – so Bob’s not so much your uncle, more your mother’s wartime GI lover (not yours personally)
      So who are you then if you’re not Corky?

  40. I’m in the “I had the same problems as everyone else” camp tonight. No outstanding favourite. Thanks to the setter and Mr. K.

  41. Good early morning solve a day late. Probably quickest ever. Only two caused me to look twice – 12a and 5d. No problem with 28a. Dr definitely With the R.
    Perhaps unusual to have last two letters missing off dessert but we have five out of seven so that is almost enough for me.

    1. Hello WW. The answer to 28a is obvious from the definition and a few checkers and so a violation of cryptic grammar convention is unlikely to upset many solvers. But, as LbR pointed out above, the problem with allowing “mostly” to indicate removal of more than the last letter is that it could make other clues a lot more difficult to solve.

  42. I was well thrown with 24d. The compiler’s help notes says “the last letter of monstrous”. Surely it should have read “the last letter of A SYNONYM for monstrous?

    1. Hi, John. I don’t like repeating “synonym of” many times in the hints. So sometimes I give instead a couple of synonyms to clarify the sense in which the fodder is being used. In this case the hint is saying remove the last letter of [a word meaning] monstrous or enormous. Apologies for not making that clear.

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