DT 30108 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30108

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30108

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment ****

Hola from a rather noisy Vega Baja! Our electricity went off at 1830 this evening and at about 2300 a lorry came and parked a massive generator outside our bedroom window (our house is next to the village sub-station). The generator is now wired in and providing electricity but I really don’t need the noise so I’m doing the blog in the small hours in the hope of getting a bit of a kip later on. On a lighter note today has been a perfect autumn day in Spain, 27°C with just a hint of a breeze and not a cloud in the sky.

You might say today’s crossword is perfect too. It’s not very hard but there are a couple of head-scratchers and nearly every clue is worthy of the blue treatment. I’ll be finding it hard to pick a podium three.

As usual the three 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.


5a           Head of state against appearing in parade (7)
MONARCH:  You need a word that can mean against, as in you are leaning against the wall, inserted into (appearing in) another word for a parade or demo.  And here’s our new one of these . . .

7a           Area local authority district, gets grant (5)
AWARD:  A(rea) followed by a local authority electoral district.

9a           Fly into a rage and go off (4,2)
BLOW UP: Double definition.

10a         Before start of event, tries again to practise (8)
REHEARSE: Start with an E (start of Event) and before it put something that could mean tries again in a court of law.

11a         Snug in unexpected uproar about student behind counter (3-7)
BAR PARLOUR:  This is another name for the part of a pub referred to as the snug. You need an anagram (unexpected) of UPROAR placed around (about) an L for student and all that placed after (behind) another word for a counter, in the pub perhaps.  Do pubs still have snugs?

13a         Trainee pocketing pounds in nightspot (4)
CLUB: A trainee reporter around (pocketing) the abbreviation of a pound Sterling.

14a         Family shows concern describing Miller’s last play (5,8)
BLOOD BROTHERS:  A word which can mean family or line followed by a word for shows concern or care around (describing) an R (MilleR’s last). This isn’t exactly the answer but it’s a good enough excuse for one of my favourite bits of Dire Straits . . .

16a         Conservative  down in the dumps? (4)
BLUE:  Double definition.  The colour associated with the conservatives also means down in the dumps.  Surely not a reference to Mrs Truss?

17a         Impasse involving British person managed by the same company? (10)
STABLEMATE:  An impasse, in a game of chess perhaps, with a B(ritish) inserted (involving).

19a         Staff officer‘s supporters were seated round hospital (5,3)
BRASS HAT:  Start with some supporters of a lady’s chest and then a word meaning seated placed around (round) an H(ospital) and split the result (5,3).

20a         Bemused  cast (6)
THROWN: Double definition.

22a         Short tale by Bond’s boss causes rage (5)
STORM:  A tale without its last letter (short) followed by the letter by which James Bond’s boss is known.

23a         Bird, duck, in list (7)
ROOSTER:  Put a O (duck in cricket) into (in) a word for a list or rota.


1d           Wintry weather in south, at present (4)
SNOW:  S(outh) followed by a word for at the present time.

2d           New paper socialist got ready (8)
PREPARED:  Anagram (new) of PAPER followed by the usual socialist.

3d           Some gather at hers more willingly (6)
RATHER: A lurker hiding in (some) gather at hers.

4d           Shriek catching a young man dressing (5,5)
SALAD CREAM: A shriek goes around (catching) the A from the clue and a word for a young man or boy.  Personally I can’t stand this stuff!

5d           Type of whisky associated with a Mediterranean island (5)
MALTA:  A proper sort of whisky followed by (associated with) the A from the clue.  One of my favourites . . .

6d           Entertain original port official (7,6)
HARBOUR MASTER:  A word which can mean entertain, as in to entertain an idea, followed by an original, of a key perhaps.

8d           Talk about field event, first in series (7)
DISCUSS:  A field event in athletics followed by an S (first in Series)

12d         For court sitting, reportedly in March? (10)
PROCESSION:  Three letters meaning for or in favour of followed by some letters which aren’t a word but if pronounced would sound like (reportedly) a court sitting.

14d         The Spanish in pub with us in eastern European country (7)
BELARUS: The Spanish definite article is inserted into (in) another word for a pub and the the US from the clue.

15d         Figure around hotel rearranged fund-raiser (8)
TELETHON:  A number (figure) placed around an anagram (rearranged) of HOTEL.

17d         Start to see me about revolutionary action plan (6)
SCHEME:  An S (start to See) and the ME from the clue are placed around (about) crosswordland’s favourite revolutionary.

18d         Lofty structure in Felixstowe razed (5)
TOWER: A lurker in the last two words of the clue.

21d         Respect  judge (4)
RATE:  Double definition.

After some thought I’ve gone for 19a and 4d on the podium but on the top step is 6d for its elegant simplicity.

Quick crossword pun:

Top line:      STALK    +     HEAPING     =     STOREKEEPING

Bottom line:    OVERRUN     +     DOUBT     =     OVER AND OUT


43 comments on “DT 30108
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  1. The clues in today’s puzzle were the essence of simplicity, demonstratingvthat clues don’t need to be convoluted to be fun. I enjoyed it and found a few head-scratchers in there. I liked 14d, the geographical clue,c4d,x6d , 11a and COTD for its sly misdirection 14a Thanks to Pommers for the hints and commiserations on the insomnia inducing generator. Tha ks also to CMpbell for a very friendly Monday puzzle.

  2. This was indeed very straightforward but immensely entertaining, and with so many excellent clues it is virtually impossible to pick a winner, but I will go with 4d.

    Thanks to Campbell for the fun, and to pommers.

  3. Should we be reading anything into the bottom Quickie pun? Or is it just that the phrase had to be something, and today it happened to be that?

    1. The bottom pun could be a message from Campbell. It is not unknown for setters to communicate that way. Giovanni ‘announced’ his ‘retirement’ from Friday back pagers in a Quickie puzzle. But, I hope it doesn’t apply here.

      1. Oh, when was that, Senf? Very sad to read your comment, I’d been thinking it’s been quite a long time since we’d had a Don end-of-week backpager, and that would explain it, sadly. He was one of my favourite backpage setters: challenging, devious, and using odd pieces of ‘specialist’ GK, but always scrupulously fairly clued.

        1. A good while ago is all I can say.

          I am not sure if it was in answers to two clues or an answer to a single clue but it read ‘No more Fridays.’

          Of course, since then we have had the Friday triumvirate.

    2. No trained radio operator would ever use the phrase “Over and out”. At the end of a transmission one says “Over” if a reply is required or “Out” if not – but never both. “Over and out” is self-contradictory and incorrect (though commonly used).

  4. Steady progress until stalling at 11a and 5d.
    Relatively simple clues, putting me into ** time.
    Nevertheless, enjoyable start to the week.
    Many thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  5. Enjoyed this one though all over too quickly. 6d was my pick to. Thought we may have got a pic of Ena (the great Violet Carson), Minnie & Martha in the snug of the Rovers Return for 11a. Wayne’s Oscar acceptance speech for True Grit (Coen Brothers remake way better) was very classy & should be shown to all nominees.
    Thanks to Campbell & Pommers – love Brothers in Arms but Laphroaig was the only Islay malt I could never take to.

  6. It’s Monday :good: It’s Campbell :good: 1.5*/4.5*

    Favourite – a toss-up between 19a and 5d – and the winner is 5d.

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  7. Cracking puzzle – very straightforward, but so much enjoyment while it lasted. Cruciverbal satisfaction comes in many forms, and Campbell is a master of providing this particular form. Hon Mentions to the surface/lurker of 3d, and 22a.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to Pommers (in particular for Dire Straits: time to put on the ‘Love over gold’ album if only for the 14 minutes of Telegraph Road, followed possibly by ‘Making Movies’).

  8. Leave it to me to try to think of Arthur ‘Miller’s last play’ before remembering that I’m working a cryptic, not the NYT puzzle, which I had just finished–which is why I ultimately must choose 14a as my COTD in this very appealing start to our week. I also like 20a (so clever, probably should be the COTD), 11a, & 4d. Thanks to pommers and Campbell. ** / ****

    I’m now enjoying the third Thursday Murder Club mystery, this one titled The Bullet That Missed–a refreshing (and, for me, restorative) sequel to The Man Who Died Twice, with some fascinating characters reprising their roles.

    1. Sorry Robert but I think the Thursday Murder Club books are deficient in character, plot, and writing. At 75 I still expect to have to think whilst reading but the only thought, since the first two were presents was I have started so I will finish.

      The success is down to an advertising campaign built around a man who was very popular on television. The buyers in the main wouldn’t recognize good writing of it bit them very hard.

      1. Sometimes, Corky (like after a hurricane), I’m just a simple soul and just need a cushy page-turner. I have no illusions….

  9. Nicely straightforward Monday puzzle, just the Quickie puns that caused a bit of head-scratching.
    Don’t think I’ve previously come across the full phrase used in 11a but a snug is certainly a reminder of the early days of Coronation Street – who could forget that hairnet!
    Top clue for me was 6d with a nod to 4d although like our reviewer, I hate the stuff.

    Thanks to Campbell and to pommers – hope your electricity has been restored and that you managed to get some sleep.

    1. Nope, generator still thrumming away. No idea how long it will be until normal electric is restored. To add to the woes our water was off for a couple of hours this morning but at least we had warning of that so could fill some bottles.

  10. I didn’t find this puzzle as straightforward as some but it was good to see my home town getting an honourable mention.

  11. I found this rather unMondayish and DNF perhaps because I have other things on my mind having had my wallet containing bank cards and much more stolen in Waitrose car park. I did however enjoy the challenge from engaging clues including 14a and 19a although those were unsolved by me. Can’t say I have heard of a 11a. TVM Campbell and particularly pommers today (hope things have quietened down for you).

      1. My commiserations on losing your wallet, Angellov. I remember the hassle of phoning up to cancel my cards, when one of my students stole mine from my bag, whilst I was engaged in a lesson in the computer network room, at the school where I was teaching. Worst of all were a couple of photos that I lost, which had sentimental value..

        1. Yes indeed I also lost photos together with driving licence, medical/covid cards, visiting cards, etc. Telephoning to cancel cards, etc. these days is a nightmare – “your call is important to us please continue to hold”!

  12. Excellent welcome back from holiday. Very enjoyable and not too taxing on my sluggish brain.
    11a was not a phrase that I am familiar with but the clueing worked well but my fav was 4d.
    Thx to all

  13. Agree with everyone that this was a pleasure from start to finish. I think the horrible stuff at 4 d has to be Clue of the Day, very funny but then so was the bottom Quickie Pun. Commiserations to all who are suffering, generators, stolen wallets, etc and thanks to Setter and Hinter. George is famous for his salad dressing which is made freshly every two or three days. A bit of this and a pinch of that, it is acclaimed in the village. Sadly he did not have the foresight of Paul Newman to turn it into a money spinner, but I love him nevertheless.

  14. Well if this was a Campbell, it sure as heck didn’t feel like it. Solved this Sunday evening when there was nothing but rubbish on TV.

    2*/3* for me.

    Favourites were 5a, 8a, 22a, 6d & 18d with no clear winner.

    Thanks to Campbell(?) and pommers

  15. A nice confidence booster to start the week, I guess it will be all down hill for the rest of it😄. Thanks to all.

  16. Missed the puzzles for a few days last week being in London seeing the girls. How they manage in the Great Wen, it was wonderful to take the road out to our northern fastness. How can you possibly live among so many people and the constant traffic. Our village has a population of about 500 and in my book that’s about 498 too many.

    Good to come back to Campbell and a his customary good puzzle on a Monday. 14a my favourite and like Robert above was going through Miller’s plays and the Miller’s Tale. The latter playing tricks which as teenagers we enjoyed reading in class.

    Thanks to Pommers and to Campbell and I hope we will see both next Monday.

  17. I felt like I was uncharacteristically falling into a rhythm of speed-solving that one. Then I was interrupted by my cat. Still counts as * time to me. With you on the 4d substance too: honey and mustard all the way!

  18. My usual Monday trouble – then look at the clues and the answers and just realise how nothing is difficult at all, let alone impossible!
    Wavelength, with quite a spoonful of dimness! Oh dear!!
    Thanks to Campbell for the crossword and to pommers for the hints (and a couple of answers too!)

  19. I enjoyed today’s offering and almost completed it in record time (for me). My only pause was the first part of 19a but had the checkers. Many thanks to Campbell and Pommers. So pleased to hear that your electricity and water have been reconnected. We were staying in one of our regular holiday cottages years ago and had a generator positioned right outside the property. It ran all day, everyday for a week. But we kept going back!

  20. Unlike the majority I found this puzzle quite tricky 😳 ****/*** Favourites are 22a and 4d (and 5d as it is a single malt from one of my favourite places Islay ) Many thanks to Pommers and to Campbell if it is he 🤔

  21. */*** from me for this most straightforward solve.

    4 Down made me chuckle, though it’s not the first time I’ve seen that construction for the answer. Nonetheless a good solve.

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  22. Straightforward and enjoyable apart from 11a. I’ve frequented pubs all my adult life, and before, and I’ve never heard of a snug referred to as that! Must be a regional thing. It rather took the shine off it for me. Favourite was 17a. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  23. I agree, a bar parlour hasn’t ever featured in my pub going cv and have been on licensed premises since the mid- 70’s. Maybe a north of Watford thing. Otherwise a very enjoyable puzzle.

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