DT 29749 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 29749

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 29749

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Hola from the Vega Baja where summer continues.  Last week we had two days of 37°C and the forecast is for a heatwave from next Thursday. Phew, the joys of summer in Spain!

As for the puzzle it’s the usual Monday elegance and not too hard but this time there’s a slightly unusual twist – it’s a pangram.  I don’t normally spot such things but when you solve 8d you’ll see why I was immediately on the lookout for one.  There are seven clues involving some sort of anagram so many of you will be pleased I’m sure.

As usual the ones I liked most are in blue.  The definitions are underlined in the clues and the answers are under the “click here” buttons so don’t click on them unless you really want to see the answer.  Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.

Across

1a           Gay old eccentric eager to return Cockney’s fiver? (46)
LADY GODIVA:  Start with an anagram (eccentric) of GAY OLD and follow with a reversal (to return) of a word meaning eager.  Split that lot (4,6) and you’ll get the Cockney rhyming slang for a fiver.

6a           Not as many to anoint? Bishop’s not required (4)
LESS:  Take a word for to anoint and remove the B (Bishop’s not required).

9a           Drink supplied by editor — I’m unwell, sickly, outside (6,4)
MULLED WINE:  Start with the usual two letters for editor.  Around it (outside) you need an anagram (sickly) of IM UNWELL.

10a         List of soldiers with unit initially (4)
MENU:  One of the usual words for soldiers followed by U (Unit initially) will give a list of dishes available in a restaurant.

12a         Keep away from car crash, having taken time off (4)
SHUN: Take a slang term for a minor car crash and remove the T (having taken Time off).  In his younger days the F1 driver James Hunt was called “Hunt the ?????” because he had more than his fair share of prangs.

13a         Country importing a Greek perfume (9)
FRAGRANCE:  Insert (importing) the A from the clue and an abbreviation of Greek into a nearby European country.

15a         Kiss and cuddle Charlie, a silly person (8)
CANOODLE:  A charade of the letter represented by the word Charlie in the phonetic alphabet, the A from the clue and a word for a silly person.

16a         Rare panic involving copyright (6)
SCARCE:  Another word for panic or gear with C(opyright) inserted.

18a         Live with rest, not posh (6)
RESIDE:  Take a word for rest or remains and remove the U (not posh).

20a         Battle  station (8)
WATERLOO:  Double definition. 

23a         Mates brought back put up with custard-pie comedy? (9)
SLAPSTICK:  A word for your mates backwards (brought back) followed by a word which can mean put up with.

24a         No more than  fair (4)
JUST:  Double definition.

26a         Check strange diet (4)
EDIT:  Anagram (strange) of DIET.

27a         I must go in to protest at decline (10)
DEPRECIATE:  Take a word which can mean to protest or frown on and insert an I (I must go in).

28a         Informed team’s leader, getting on in years (4)
TOLD:  Team’s leader is, of course, a T so follow it with a word for getting on in years as in aged.

29a         Vessel catching sole at sea for bulk trader (10)
WHOLESALER:  The type of vessel commanded by Captain Ahab is placed around (catching) an anagram (at sea) of SOLE.

Down

1d           Farm animal, male, put in place for scientific research (4)
LAMB: Insert (put in) an M(ale) into a place where scientific research is carried out.

2d           Party left public house with popular swimmer (7)
DOLPHIN:  Start with the usual party (2), then L(eft) and the two letter abbreviation of Public House as used on OS maps. Finally the usual word for popular or fashionable.

3d           Old fire engine in Dresden goes out after end of bombing (5,7)
GREEN GODDESS:  Start with a G (end of bombinG) and after it you need an anagram (out) of DRESDEN GOES.  Fortunately this clue has got nothing to do with Diana Moran!!!!

4d           Collapse having crashed on trip (8)
DOWNFALL:  A word for crashed, as in the stock market has crashed, followed by a word for a trip or drop.

5d           One maliciously damaging vehicle, youth going north (6)
VANDAL:  Start with a vehicle, quite often white, and the reversal (going north in a down clue) of another word for a youth or young man.

7d           One of the Roosevelts confused one earl (7)
ELEANOR:  This one of the Roosevelts was the wife of Franklin D and she’s an anagram (confused) of ONE EARL.

8d           Musical instrument in grip on top of case (7-3)
SQUEEZE BOX:  Taker a word for to grip hard and put it on top of another word for a case or carton.  Not surprisingly even I couldn’t miss the pangram after this one!

11d         Sailor tucking into biscuits, quality items (12)
CRACKERJACKS:  A four letter word for a sailor is inserted into (tucking into) some biscuits which are often eaten with cheese.

14d         On which a duck may be recorded? (10)
SCORESHEET:  Or any other cricket score for that matter.  I think these are more commonly known as cards.

17d         Fish in the morning up overlooking turbulent creek and lake (8)
MACKEREL:  The two letters for in the morning are reversed (up in a down clue) and followed by an anagram (turbulent) of CREEK and finally an L(ake).  I used to catch these from the harbour wall in Saundersfoot during childhood holidays.

19d         Sales pitch about a new dog (7)
SPANIEL: A word for a salesman’s patter placed around the A from the clue and an N(ew).

21d         Famous guitarist from LA — EP’s unusual, extremely unusual (3,4)
LES PAUL:  Anagram (unusual) of LA EPS followed the end letters (extremely) from UnusuaL And here’s a bit of music from him . . .

22d         Snag involving base using the latest science? (2-4)
HI TECH:  Take a word for a snag and insert the letter which is the base of natural logarithms.

25d         Behind, in arrears (4)
REAR:  It’s a lurker hiding in (in) the last word of the clue.

My favs today are 3d, 7d and 8d with, I think, 8d on the top step.


Quick crossword puns:

Top line:         THYME     +     CHER     =     TIMESHARE

Bottom line:     CARE     +     FILLY     =     CAREFULLY or more likely CAERPHILLY   Ta to Colin.

90 comments on “DT 29749
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  1. A straightforward enough puzzle for a Monday. Are you allowed hyphenated words in Scrabble? 8d would get you a fortune!

    All over in */** time. COTD is the bottom Quickie pun, shouldn’t it be a castle in Wales? Many thanks to the setter and Pommers.

  2. Congratulations to Campbell on his 500th puzzle and an enjoyable one it was too. For once, I saw the pangram. No favourite because there were too many good clues to single out one. I managed to finish unaided making two unaided solves in a row.

    Many thanks to Campbell for the entertainment. Thanks, also, to Pommers for the hints.

    Like MalcolmR, I thought the bottom Quickie pun was “Caerphilly”.

  3. The setter is probably correct but 6a….not as many? That aside a very pleasant pangram with my ticks going to 1&27a plus8d.
    1/3.5*
    Many thanks to Campbell and Pommers for the fun in the South Devon sun.

    1. .Samantha has to nip off now to meet her cheese-maker gentleman friend. He has promised to show her how to put a blue vein into her Caerphilly. Thanks to I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue

      1. Oh my, those were the days when comedy was really funny and laugh out loud! “Round the Horne” was a particular favourite. We stayed at a cottage owned by the head of BBC Radio 2 comedy. His name was John Simmons and you will hear him being credited at the end of RTH. He regaled us with many tales of the show and the cast. He said Kenneth Horne was a gentleman but he couldn’t stand Kenneth Williams.

        1. Steve you mentioned Round the Horne. Kenneth Horne is reputed to have said “I’m all for censorship. If ever I see a double entendre, I whip it out.” as you said those were the days …. they were magic moments of comedy.

          1. “How bona to vada your eek, Mr. Horne! I’m Julian and this is my friend, Sandy. Welcome to our humble establishment. Bona Boutique is at your disposal, isn’t it Sandy”?

            “Oh, Jules, I don’t like the look of his lallies!”

            Can you see the BBC broadcasting that today?

            1. It’s really great that we have Radio 4 Extra and YouTube there’s so much to enjoy. I have recently watched all 12 episodes of Early Doors on Daily Motion (some name for a website I originally thought it was a medical advice site) I use it if YouTube doesn’t come up with the goods, the ad’s, even with the sound mute on, can be a bind to watch.

  4. At first glance I thought this was going to be a great deal harder than it turned out to be. Got 8d quite early so was on the lookout for a pangram. All in all very enjoyable so thanks to the setter and Pommers

  5. An enjoyable puzzle, over too quickly
    Thanks to Campbell.
    Thanks to Pommers for review.

    (#2 Quickie pun, type of cheese?)

  6. A light but pleasing puzzle with some witty clues (1.5*/4*). 1a appealed (sometimes it helps if you are a Cockney born and bred) and 3d was a great blast from the past, which I remember seeing in London in the 70’s those are my joint clues of the day and8d made me laugh as I had an uncle who used to play one.

  7. I have never spotted a Pangram – I stupidly always forget about them🥺. I thought **/*** although I was interrupted by a couple of phone calls so lost my mojo a little. At least the GK was well within my grasp – no obscure plants thank heavens – and quite a few easy anagrams helped. 1a was my COTD in this enjoyable exercise with thanks to Campbell and congrats on his 500th and of course to pommers sweating it out down there.

  8. Pleasantly straightforward and certainly helped by the early spotting of a pangram. A rash of noteworthy clues of which 8d leapt out as a favourite. Great fun.

    Thanks and congratulations to Campbell on reaching his milestone, and to pommers.

  9. A gentle breeze of a puzzle. I was thinking of a deep sea diver for the fiver but as a good old Coventry Kid the correct answer wasn’t far behind. I didn’t notice the pangram as usual. Thanks to Pommers for the review and thanks to Campbell for the puzzle. 500? Golly bongs

  10. A very brisk solver in just under 1.5* starting from the bottom up. Was on pangram alert after 11d but as the NE was my final quadrant doubted it would be the case until 8d (thought we might get a clip of The Who) settled matters. All very enjoyable & congratulations to our Monday maestro on his 500th puzzle (how do you know that Steve?). As a bookie you came across all sorts of slang terms for amounts of money but a commodore for £15 was certainly one of the more unusual (3 x a lady).
    Thanks to Campbell & Pommers
    Ps I make Steve right re the bottom pun. Always makes me think of what I read is Paul Halpern’s (Dada) favourite of his own clues – To make cheese, how do you milk a Welsh hedgehog (10) & it’s very tasty too.

    1. Huntsman, the editor has put a note about Campbell’s milestone at the foot of the clues in the newspaper.

  11. 2*/4.5*. Like pommers, I was on pangram alert as soon as I had solved 8d, soon to be reinforced by 11d. This was perfect for a Monday – light and great fun with 8d my favourite. Like pommers, I was on pangram alert as soon as I had solved 8d, soon to be reinforced by 11d.

    I enjoyed the clip of the late, great Les Paul (real name Lester Polsfuss!). Interestingly the condition which the product advertised in the video clip purports to cure turned up today in Hoskins’ Indy puzzle, wonderfully clued in typical Hoskins’ style.

    Many thanks to Campbell, and congratulations on your milestone. Many thanks too to pommers.

    1. I’ve recently started doing the Indy puzzles now I’ve worked out (not difficult really) that you can reduce the size of the grid so that you can see it in full. Enjoyed the Hoskins one today & must say I’m very impressed with them overall.

  12. I am relatively new to these cryptic crosswords, but found this one easy to get to around 80% and then I stumbled.

    Can anyone explain 18a a bit more, why does ‘not posh’ indicate to remove the U?

    1. Welcome to the blog

      U is an adjective used of words, behaviour etc) as used by or found among the upper-classes (posh). It regularly appears in crosswords so is worth remembering

  13. The bark of today’s puzzle was far worse than its bite and solved without hints. Plenty of good clues with 1and 27a, and 8d getting very honourable mentions.

    Congratulations to Campbell on reaching 500 not out with the 500th a fine example of his skill. And not to forget to thank Pommers for his usual good blog.

  14. Terrific puzzle; I enjoyed solving it (unaided, hooray!). Last one in was 22d – it’s always the shorter answers that hold me up.

    I was trying to think which hit single featured 1a, and then it struck me – screechy Freddie and Queen. I hope that doesn’t settle in as an earworm for the rest of the day.

    Today’s crossword soundtrack: George Harrison – All Things Must Pass (I haven’t played it since it was released in 1971…)

    Thanks and congratulations to Campbell; further thanks to pommers.

    1. I hear George’s son, Dhani, is back in the studio at the family house in Henley, producing a rejigged version of the album, Terence (it was in one of the local papers.

      1. Hi Chris – yes it’s been released this week as the fiftieth anniversary edition in various formats, including a deluxe version at an eye-watering £859.99!

    2. I only saw George Harrison once. 17th October 1987 at Wembley Arena. He sat with Eric Claptout in the seats at the side of the stage for the concert by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers with Bob Dylan. George Harrison joined Bob Dylan at the end of his set for the song Rainy Day Women. London was in a chaotic mess as this was the day after the hurricane. A good day to be in London and Mr Bob Dylan had the pleasure of shaking my hand

  15. It’s Monday :good: It’s Campbell’s 500th :good:

    Very straightforward, so much so that the proscribed term came to mind – */*****

    I missed the pangram, but then I normally do, just too busy writing in the answers.

    My immediate thought on the Bottom Line Pun was pommers’ answer rather than Colin’s.

    Candidates for favourite – 20a, 2d, 5d, and 19d – and the winner is, with a slight groan, 20a.

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

    1. I’m surprised at the acclaim for 20a: that seemed to me close to being a ‘single definition twice’ sort of a clue: the station is named after (a bridge named after) the battle, so it’s far from a co-incidence that the word fits both those definitions.

      And as a two-word clue, it was very likely to be a double definition, so “think of a station named after a battle” became more general knowledge than anything cryptic. This isn’t a complaint: many others put the clue as among their favourites, so clearly the setter was right to include it; I’d just be interested in hearing what it was people appreciated.

      Maybe I just found it too easy because we happened to be at that station yesterday (with an Advance ticket we’d somehow been sold that was only valid on a train that, because of engineering work, didn’t actually exist!) — so it sprang readily to mind?

  16. Going for a **/**** ,pleasant start to the week, remembered 3d and guessed 1a from the clue-liked the surface.
    14d raised a smile, pity about yesterdays rainy day, could have been a tight game ,looking forward to the second test starting later this week scoresheet at the ready!
    Favourite was 23a for its originality.
    Thanks to pommers for the picks especially the Les Paul rendition.

  17. As usual with Campbell took a while to get going then all went smoothly to finish in mid ** time. Congratulations to Campbell on the 500 milestone.
    As usual fair cluing with no obtuse synonyms or GK.
    Thank you to Campbell & pommers.
    Solving 1d again reminded me to send best wishes to Kath & her flock.
    Having lived in S. Wales & worked in Caerphilly the homophone is a stretch as the first four syllables are pronounced K-er. I agree with those earlier

    1. I meant to say “I agree with those earlier though that it is the intended pun. Nice & topical though with Olympic gold medal boxer Lauren Price coming from there. Well Ystrad Mynach actually. – now that would test Campbell’s skill to produce a pun from that!

      1. Whow! Ystrad Mynach! Bacon training at the Fine Fare shop! 1962 by motorbike from Pershore, Worcs. Fanny Barnett 150cc. Lovely Digs! They apologised about the outside loo, I had survived that in our house in Malvern! Bedroom view of the slag heap!!
        Got home safely, still able to bone a joint!!
        First time since be ing there I have seen the name in print!!!
        Thanks for the memory!!!

        1. Not to be confused with Ystrad Rhondda in the next valley – I caught the wrong train and found out the hard way!

  18. Several things I didn’t know until today’s sparkling pangram, which I detected early on, but I was able to work them out because of the precision of the clues (1a, 3d, 14d). 27a was my last one in and is my COTD. Thanks to Campbell and congratulations on #500, and to pommers for the review. ** / ****

  19. Rattled through this and 8d certainly switched the pangram alert on. Needed to confirm the guitarist in 21d. A lovely puzzle to start the week.

    Thanks to Pommers and today’s setter.

  20. While this had all the usual marks of a Campbell puzzle (and well done on the 500th) I found this rather less enjoyable than their usual offerings.

    8 anagrams (more than 1 in 4 clues), full or partial, is simply too many in my view. I scowled darkly at 6a, thought the vessel in 28a somewhat vague (although both were entirely fair), and was surprised on completing the grid not to have ticked a single clue for special mention – frst time I can recall for a Campbell grid.

    My COTD will therefore have to be 19d: the working examples of which breeds are without doubt the finest mutts, however ill-trained they might be! I shall admit to a wee degree of bias in this regard, having recently lost a superb working cocker and acquired a mischievious ESS pup, who will learn all sorts of naughtiness, as well as plenty of good things I hope, from our older ESS.

    1.5* / 2*

    Many thanks to Campbell and to Pommers.

  21. An enjoyable, straightforward puzzle today. **/*** I didn’t notice it was a pangram. Favourite 3d. I remember them being put back into service in the late seventies when everybody (bar me) seemed to be on strike in London. Thanks to all.

    1. I was working too, Greta but I remember the fire engines chugging sedately along with a soldier/ volunteer ringing the bell ny hand as hard as he could.

      1. If I remember rightly, it was the winter of 1979. I was working at the south bank poly at the time. No heating, working in coats and gloves. Then after work I’d arrive home to find it was our turn to have no power. It was as good an excuse as any to go to the pub! Happy days.

        1. Autumn/Winter 1977/78 when the GGs were brought out of retirement. I remember it well, being diverted from my primary duties serving HM.

          1. I managed to find a cylindrical paraffin heater in a junk shop, filled it at a shop on the way home from school and carried it back home, arms coming out of their sockets. The top screwed off to reveal a cooking plate, so we got heat and a one pot cooked meal by candle light during the evening power cuts. Then we taught ourselves to play piquet, while huddled round the stove and candle.

          2. I think the 3d’s have also been filling in for striking firefighters more recently than that: I knew them from their being on the news at some point in my childhood, but I was only a few months old in the winter of 1977, so it seems unlikely that’s the occasion I can recall!

  22. Solved on a short part of the bus journey back from Canterbury, my overwhelming memory being that there were quite a lot of four-letter words in the grid. Thanks and Congratulations to Campbell, and also to Pommers – I’ll swap you smoe of this morning’s torrential rain for a little bit of your heat.

    Fans of Ray T’s short clues will enjoy solving the even shorter ones provided by Brendan in today’s Guardian (as Virgilius, he used to set the Sunday Telegraph Prize Puzzles)

    1. Many thanks for the tip about Brendan, CS. It was very enjoyable indeed and amazing that he has compiled it with no more than three words per clue!

  23. A bright and breezy solve for me although I did make a mess of 14d having confidently entered the answer with ‘board’ at the end. I’m sure that every cricket match I’ve attended has used one of those to record the scores so I didn’t think beyond it.
    Nice to see the old 3d again. The family who owned the business I worked in had a beautifully restored one which was brought out for every Open Day, much to the delight of enthusiasts and small children!
    Podium places went to 15a – delightful word – the succinct 20a and the clever 27a along with 11d which could have proved problematic had it not been for the ‘J’ popping up when it did.

    Thanks and congrats to Campbell for 500 back-pagers and thanks to pommers for the review and particularly the clip of one of my all-time favourite groups and songs. Couldn’t have told you the name of the ‘famous’ guitarist in 21d but his face was quite familiar when I played the old clip.

  24. Thanks (and congratulations) to Campbell for a super puzzle to start the week and to Pommers for the hints. I always enjoy reading them to see if my reasoning is the same as yours. Some lovely clues 1a, 27a and 8d which alerted me also to the pangram. Warm sunshine at the moment but an hour ago it was bucketing with rain and I am girding my loins to drive into Cambridge, just for John Lewis. Do I dare? My little froggy friend is still in the greenhouse, he is so sweet!

    1. I went in the pool for the first time in ages and was able to rescue two little tree frogs! Now those are cute, only about 1/2-inch long!

  25. Meant to say – how many of us remember the old TV programme 11d where the lucky few won an 11d pen or pencil?!!

    1. It’s a bit like Doctor Who inasmuch as your favourite/remembered presenter/doctor tends to age you – Crowther & Glaze for me. Pertwee & Baker my doctors.

      1. I must be old. On sight of the answer I immediately thought of Eamonn Andrews followed by Leslie Crowther

      2. Pertwee was the best Doctor for me. We saw a stage production with our daughter and her friend at Mold Theatre of “Doctor Who and the Daleks”. It was a great production and Jon Pertwee dismissed the Daleks with “Amazing what they can do with an egg whisk and a sink plunger”!

  26. A super puzzle for me, managed in * time,which doesn’t happen very often. I think 3D might cause problems for overseas solvers, I got it straight away as I had four of them based with me during the 2002/3 fireman’s strike. The only slight hold up was 14d as I had board as the end part, this was soon remedied when 23,26 and 28 slipped in. Yes, I started on the down clues first. Thanks to all.

  27. A nice gentle puzzle to start the non-work week. **/**** with some nice clueing today. Hard to pick favourites as there are many but my top ones include 1a, 20a, 2d, 8d & 21d with 1a the winner followed very closely by 21d.
    Liked this puzzle a lot and was a satisfying solve for me on Sunday evening in the garden, as the sun finally peeked through just after 4pm local time.

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers

  28. Fun and (mostly) straightforward. I didn’t spot the pangram because I didn’t get 8d until I came here looking for help and then of course the penny dropped as I needed to get a Q and a B and an X all in that last answer!
    I’m surprised more love hasn’t been given to 11d. A corker of a word and reminds me of a TV show in my childhood which perhaps shows my age (that I’m still young?!).
    Thanks and congrats to Campbell. I see the newspaper names the setter as “Allan Scott”- has he been outed?! Which is the pseudonym and which the real name?!

    1. His real name is Allan Scott. I believe Campbell is the pseudonym he used when he was setting Toughies. I also believe he did the Everyman puzzle in the Observer for several years but I may be wrong about that.

      1. I thought he must be quite young because I am still surprised that anyone could refer lightly to the bombing of Dresden in 1945 and use it as a crossword clue. Am I being unduly sensitive?

  29. I loved this, like pommers, finding the pangram on solving 8d which helped so much with the rest of the unusual letters. I solved 24a looking for the “j” and that, in turn, helped with 11d. I solved 3d from the anagram, then I had to look it up as hadn’t heard of it as a fire engine. I always like it when I learn something like that. I also had to google Diana Moran but don’t believe I’m any wiser for it! I needed e-help with 27a, there went my unaided solve, rats. I liked lots, 15a is a lovely word, 1a was fun, 1d reminded me of Kath, all great stuff.
    Thank you Campbell for all the fun, happy 500th anniversary, and pommers for his review.

    1. Diana Moran was the speaker at the Lady Taverners lunch I went to last week at Madingly Hall. 79 years old and has hardly changed since she
      used to charm us on breakfast television, and still as supple and flexible as ever. I was able to have a chat with her , delightful.

    2. Me too on having to look up what Diana Moran had to do with 3d. It didn’t help that I was initially thinking of the actor who plays Philomena Cunk, but that’s Diana Morgan. (Though in fairness, the clue also has nothing to do with her either, so the comment still applies!)

  30. I enjoyed today’s puzzle and got off to a great start but it took me ages to get 8d and 11d. I didn’t know the guitarist but with the rest of the checkers I worked it out correctly.

    Many congratulations to Campbell on completing his 500th back page cryptic. Thanks also to the Pommers for your hints. Especially enjoyed listening to Lionel Richie which always conjures up a romantic dream!

  31. 2/4. Enjoyable solve as usual for a Monday. 24a made me think pangram and sure enough it was. 8d confirmed it and was my favourite clue. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  32. Great start to the week…pangram👍
    Thanks and congratulation to Campbell for the excellent milestone puzzle and, of course, to Pommers for some more great bloggin’ and hintin’ 😜
    Cheers!

  33. Campbell always tricks me into thinking it is going to be impossible, and then it isn’t. We lived not too far from Greenham Common where they had a 3d. When we had a fire in our nearby woodland, and the local fire engines needed help, they would send out the 3d. Thanks and congratulations to Campbell, plus thanks to Pommers. Phew, 37c is hotter than south Florida, don’t envy you.

  34. I’m not always a fan of Campbell’s puzzles but I thought his 500th was really excellent and I enjoyed the solve! Many clues brought a smile but especially 1a. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  35. Here I am on the Roseland Peninsula doing the crossword after entertaining grandchildren. Not a beach day today which was a good thing as the adults feeling somewhat fragile. Congrats to Campbell. 8d was a good clue leading to a pangram. Last two in were 27a and 20a. I knew I was looking for a word for a battle and a station but was looking for something more exotic. I got nearly all the way through the alphabet and kicked myself. I managed to resist Pommer’s hints but thank you as read them afterwards. Favourites 1 13 and 27a and 8 and 22d.

  36. All very straightforward just 27a giving me pause for thought although 25d was last in as I thought it was too obvious. As with others 8d was the pangram alert indicator. Very enjoyable. I could have gone with 19d as favourite but I’ll stick with the designer of my avatar 21d. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  37. That was discombobulatingly straightforward! Completed in a single session, offline, no hints, no revealed letters. I often struggle on Mondays, with vocabulary or terms that I’m not familiar with (a bit old-fashioned, maybe?), so I kept expecting to get stuck, but it somehow never happened.

    My favourite was 2d, because of the surprise when I put those jigsaw pieces together and it did actually turn out to be a word. Thank you Campbell, Pommers, and all of the other commenters.

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