DT 30114 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30114

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30114

Hints and tips by pommers

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Hola from Vega Baja.  Falcon is otherwise engaged today so I’m sorry but you’ll just have to put up with me for the second week in a row.

Today we have the usual Monday fare with a lot of gimmes and a few head scratchers to keep you on your toes. As usual I enjoyed it and hope you did too.

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.


1a           Cool word describing current caretaker (7)
INTERIM:  A word which could describe a caretaker manager of a football club for example is made up of a word meaning cool, as in hip or fashionable, followed by another word for a word placed around (describing) the letter for electric current in physics notation.

5a           Clairvoyant ringing French duke a Casanova (7)
SEDUCER:  A clairvoyant or prophet placed a round (ringing) the French word for duke.

9a           Carriage from public house to a public school (7)
PHAETON:  The abbreviation of public house used on OS maps followed by the A from the clue and finally crosswordland’s favourite public school.

10a         Bearing left for JFK? (7)
AIRPORT:  This something that JFK in New York is an example of, hence the question mark.  It’s a bearing or mien followed by left on a ship. Heathrow or John Lennon would have done just as well.

11a         Article by both upset about book one, a fantasy novel (3,6)
THE HOBBIT: The first word is a definite article and after it (by) you need an anagram (upset) of BOTH placed around (about) a B(ook) and the letter that looks like number one.

12a         Top artist and film-maker (5)
CAPRA: A word meaning to top or beat followed by the usual artist.

13a         Female with a fine bundle (5)
SHEAF:  The feminine pronoun followed by the A from the clue and an F(ine).

15a         Metal bracket in corner next to golf club (5,4)
ANGLE IRON:  A corner, of a triangle perhaps, followed by a word for a metal golf club.

17a         React violently behind fan in train carriage (6,3)
BUFFET CAR:  Anagram (violently) of REACT placed after (behind) a fan or aficionado.  I never know whether this word has one or two f’s but apparently both spellings are acceptable.

19a         Musician‘s piano brought into wharf (5)
PIPER:  Another word for a wharf or quay has a P(iano) inserted (brought into).

22a         Epic poem from Virgil I admire (5)
ILIAD:  A lurker hiding in (from) the last three words.  Shame that the epic poem isn’t actually by Virgil.

23a         Untold pounds pocketed by earl’s wife (9)
COUNTLESS:  Insert (pocketed by) the letter for pounds Sterling into the title held by the wife of an earl.

25a         Cold capital city — note prevailing conditions (7)
CLIMATE:  C(old) followed by a South American capital city and then a note from the Sol-Fa scale.

26a         Smart alec‘s in clink now, allegedly (4-3)
KNOW ALL:  Another lurker hiding in (in) the last three words.

27a         Creole cooking absorbs good painter born in Crete (2,5)
EL GRECO:  Anagram (cooking) of CREOLE with a G(ood) inserted (absorbs).

28a         Very drunk on the French steamship (7)
LEGLESS:  Another word for the on side of a cricket pitch followed by the French definite article and then two letters for a steam ship.


1d           I’m with favourite American force (7)
IMPETUS:  The IM from the clue followed by the teacher’s favourite and two letters for American.

2d           Circus attraction having net facility, we hear (7)
TRAPEZE:  Another word for a net and the three letters which aren’t a word but if pronounced would sound like (we hear) and word meaning facility as in “he did it with great facility”.

3d           Old-style railway employee sent up after blowing top (5)
RETRO:  A railway employee who might have carried your bags has his first letter removed (blowing top) and is then reversed (sent up in a down clue).

4d           Mountain climb, not an easy one abandoned (4,5)
MONT BLANC:  Anagram (easy) of CLIMB NOT AN but without the I (one abandoned).

5d           Scarcely sufficient time after screening (5)
SCANT: T(ime) after a word which for screening or look over.

6d           Sordid material, base, secured by bloke for next to nothing (4,5)
DIRT CHEAP:  Some sordid material or muck followed by another word for a bloke placed around (secured by) the base of natural logarithms.

7d           Police officer bagging husband’s axe (7)
CHOPPER:  A slang term for a police officer placed around (bagging) an H(usband).  Here’s the iconic bike of the seventies . . .

8d           Learn new skills on coach (7)
RETRAIN:  Two letters meaning on or about followed by a word meaning to coach.

14d         Put out food for large thrush (9)
FIELDFARE:  A word which can mean to put out, a cricket team for example, followed by a word for some food.

16d         Art? Style of music introduced to Elgar abroad (9)
GARFUNKEL:  Art here is nothing to do with painting or music but is short for Arthur.  To get this Arthur’s surname you need a style of music originating in the 1960’s inserted into (introduced to) an anagram (abroad) of ELGAR.  A bit of Art’s music . . .

17d         With vigour, cook cut roll (7)
BRIOCHE:  Another word for vigour or elan followed by a cook without his last letter (cut).

18d         Female, poorly, breaking down (7)
FAILING:  F(emale) followed by a word for poorly as in ill.

20d         Quietly tell church dignitary (7)
PRELATE:  The letter for quietly in music followed by a word meaning to tell a story.

21d         Follows Ulster, beaten by foremost of sides (7)
RESULTS:  Anagram (beaten) of ULSTER followed by an S (foremost of Sides).

23d         Company adopting Socialist principles (5)
CREDO:  Take the usual two letters for company and insert (adopting) a word for a socialist or communist.

24d         Runs out of crowd in skimpy undergarment (5)
THONG:  Take another word for a crowd and remove the R (Runs out of).

My favourites today are 15a, 28a with 16d on the top step.

Quick crossword puns:

Top Line:     AUTUMN     +     ATTICS     =     AUTOMATICS

Bottom line:     TRANCE     +     BOUGHT     =     TRANSPORT

61 comments on “DT 30114

  1. 2*/4*. The usual light but fun Monday fare with the bonus of two excellent Quickie puns.

    My podium choices are 23a, 28a & 16d.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to pommers.

  2. Couple of new words in there, one more sympathetically clued than the other, the rest straightforward…but I have to say the brilliant 16d is an early contender for clue of the week.
    Many thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

    Ps you’d be very lucky to spot a railway employee referred to at 3d these days.

      1. I thought ‘old style ‘ was referring to the answer rather than the employee, but could double up I suppose. Thanks to the compiler for an enjoyable Monday offering and to Pommers for the hints, which I didn’t need but enjoyed reading.

  3. Top notch for me & concur with Stephen re 16d which was easily COTD. 15a& 14d needed confirmation but otherwise nothing unfamiliar. Ticks also for 5,9&12a along with2,4,6&17d.
    Thanks to Campbell for a great kick off to the new week & to Pommers

  4. Thanks Pommers. That 7d illustration takes me back.
    A Campbell fail for me, thinking that rustlers might follow a flock of sheep, knowing I wouldn’t get away with it. In a rush before GP duties. COTD the glorious 16d.

    1. I was with rustlers for a while, but checking the dictionary I realised it was stretching a synonym too far. Got there eventually but before 17d.

  5. Enjoyed this kick-off to the cruciverbal week with just a slight hiccup in the SW. 12a unknown to me. Failed to account for on in 28a. Not sure 16a on its own can actually be deemed to be a style of music. Many thanks Campbell and pommers.

    1. 12a made loads of films but my favourite and possibly his best known is “It’s a Wonderful Life” starring James Stewart.

  6. Stumped by 14d, new word for me.
    Otherwise, it all came nicely together.
    16d brought a smile, as did 3d
    Former most certainly COTD.
    Many thanks, Campbell and pommers.

  7. Found this quite challenging today until I finally got on the same wavelength, last in for me was 17d as I was convinced it started BOI (for cook cut). Anyone else fall into this trap?

  8. The concern over last week’s ‘bottom pun’ seems to have come to naught, so – It’s Monday, and a Holiday to boot :good: It’s Campbell :good: – 1.5*/4.5*

    Candidates for favourite – 1a, 5a, 1d, and 16d – and the winner is 16d.

    Thanks to Campbell and to pommers.

    I wonder if there will be any news in today’s Newsletter!

  9. All the expected fun from our Monday magician with the odd bit of GK to keep us on our toes.
    All my favoured clues came in the lower half – 28a plus 14,16&17d with 16d taking the gold star.

    Thanks to consistent Campbell and to pommers for manning the fort.

    1. I’m sure the 14d bird did not cause you any issues, Jane!
      Good puzzle. Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  10. I really enjoyed the mix of clue types, chrades, lurker, lego clues, a agrams cryptic definitionns,etc with tthe added spice of clever misdirection and General Knowledge invrhis puzzle. It was a rwfreshing change from the general round of backpagers, which have lots of lego clues, double Definitions and ever more mystifying cryptic definitions. I liked the geographical aspect of 25a, the 26a lurker, 14a ( a beautiful bird and rather uncommon now) and COTD 6d. I love musical allusions in the clues. Many thanks to Pommers for the hints and to Campbell for an exceptionally fine Monday puzzle.

  11. I finished this at a canter despite being in a bad mood, courtesy of a nail in the rear nearside tyre of my new car. That said, the brilliant 16d alone put paid to my angst about the cost of said tyre, and gave me a boost when I needed it. Great fun.

    My thanks to the double punner and pommers.

    1. I was in a bad mood this morning, my dander had been up twice before elevenses! (What is a dander and why does it go up? Someone will know) Fortunately all has been calm so far since then – but I am not letting down my guard……

      1. I know, but only because you prompted me to look in the BRB – anger or passion, but no indication where it comes from. So, to get one’s dander up – to become angry.

  12. As Pommers says,the usual Monday fare and I agree together with the **/****, favourite was 28a and special mention for 16a, what a surface! Liked 27a as well.
    Thanks to setter and Pommers.
    Good start to the cricket in Australia.

  13. The runaway favourite, 16d, certainly is my COTD. Above average Monday quality, I thought, and most enjoyable. I also liked 5a & 4d (and immediately thought of the great poem by Shelley). Had to confirm 14d, which is new to me. Thanks to pommers, especially for ‘The Boxer’, and Campbell. **/****

  14. I always enjoy Campbell on Monday. He provides puzzles for those of us on the lower slopes of the cryptic crossword world. The week starts well which provides impetus for those days when we need the hints to finish what are often very puzzling puzzles.

    So many thanks to Campbell especially for 16d which is a superb clue and 28a which brought a broad smile. Thanks also to Pommers for his exemplary blog

  15. Very enjoyable with only two hesitations – on 21d and 17d. Happily I realised there weee two anagrams to fit the latter and jumped the right way17d was a different kettle of fish. It does not seem to have trouble others I was barking completely up the wrong trea even looking for a musical word for vigorously. I had a final trawl through the alphabet before resorting to a hint and the penny drop. I shall now look up the first four letters as to me it is a trade name for wooden toys! Never occurred to me that the answer was going to be a bread roll. Feel very satisfied I got it, but how I could be so out of gear with that one I don’t know. Favourites 5 and 9a and 1 and 16d – the last of which gets the star prize. Thanks scampi ell and Pommers (when I was failing on 17d I looked at the hints for all those providing checkers as I thought I had gone wrong with one of those!)

  16. A slightly more challenging than usual Campbell for me today (and the QC took rather longer than the CC) but a super Monday crossword, with 16d the standout COTD for me.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to Senf

    1. I know it must seem like that I am duty every day but only on Fridays and Sundays, not even the occasional Saturday any more!

    2. Apologies for the confusion, Senf – though I am always appreciative of your own blogs! – and sincere thanks instead to Pommers.

  17. I had a slow start with this one, but the lurker in 22a set me off running. I felt quite cross at the thought of 14d. Pesky birds. They always strip all the berries off my trees. 16d was the absolute winner for me today. Thank you Pommers and Campbell.

  18. 2/4. Enjoyable start to the week with some very good clues headed by 16d. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers. We are forecast to get some rain today but I can’t see that happening possibly for another week or so. This month, apart from 4 October, there have been temperature records set every day all around BC.

    1. The Iberian peninsula is also having a warmer and drier autumn than normal. Our temp records were broken over the summer though and I’m here to tell you that 44°C is effin’ ‘ot !!!

  19. Enjoyed this all the more because it includes a favourite book, poem, painter and film director! Thank you Campbell and Pommers

  20. A very enjoyable puzzle today.
    My favourite too was 16d.

    Had to check the BRB for 14d …knew it was a bird, but not the kind of bird. (Never did know much about birds beyond robins, crows and pigeons.) Needed the hint for 17d ….

    Thanks to Campbell and to Pommers.
    Beautiful sunny day here, but windy making it cool.

  21. All filled in nicely after Royston Ladies Luncheon Club meeting, G went to the pub with another lunch- widow and had an all day breakfast or something similarly unhealthy so, no cooking tonight – yeay. 28a was a bung in – until I read Pommer’s notes the crickety clue had gone right over my head. I thought 9a was neat, and agree that 16d was first class. I had never really clocked the fact that all four seasons have six letters. And I had a funny thought today, almost wrote to the editor again to offer it to a cartoonist. If our new King Charles was a dinosaur would he be a C Rex? I think that’s very funny 🤣🤣but George was quite underwhelmed. My usual thanks to Messrs Campbell & Pommers, who sound like purveyors of fine champagne.

    1. C Rex is a lovely concept – though he’s certainly no dinosaur in his views. Ahead of his time in many ways.

  22. Difficult enough for me today although perhaps not quite as tricky as Mondays can be sometimes.
    Along with most others my favourite was 16d – took me for ages but got there eventually.
    Thanks to Campbell and to pommers – I’m now stuck with trying to remember the Ray T clue for 24d – a very long time ago.

  23. Seemed a little tougher today for a Campbell offering. 2.5*/4* for me.

    Word that I had trouble with was 9a … not new … just out of mind.
    Favourites today include 15a, 17a, 26a, 5d & 16d – with my winner being 17a

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers

    As Vancouverbc said weather has been so warm/hot this last couple of month all over BC, my hanging baskets are still ‘hanging’ in there quite nicely … water them daily and being rewarded with colour and showy baskets … incredible for mid October.

  24. Proper backpager, solvable with plenty of amusing clues 😃 **/**** Favourites were 19a, 14d and 16d. 14d will soon be with us for the Winter 👍 Thanks to Pommers and to Campbell 🤗

  25. I seem to have found it a lot tougher than most but I always struggle with Campbell puzzles. Just can’t seem to get on his wavelength at all. Don’t understand the reference to an axe in 7d, I thought that was a guitar.
    For me very little fun, just a slog.
    Thx for the hints

  26. Made a stupid start by putting the answer to 1d into 1a; fortunately, realised immediately 🙃. Enjoyed today’s puzzle it just flowed until final clue to go in. I couldn’t get 23d. Checked the hints and realised I had Chicago and not climate, doh! Many thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  27. Did I mention drier autumn in a previous post? Well, we now have thunder, lighting and rain like stair-rods! Deep joy!

  28. Only 12a was unknown to me. The rest were a mixture of straightforward and hard but fairly clued. I’ll go with the majority for 16d as favourite despite initially trying to fit punk in as the music style, I preferred it to the actual answer. Thanks to Campbell and Pommers.

  29. Thanks to Campbell and to Pommers for the review and hints. What a super start to the week. A real joy to solve, not too tricky, but very entertaining. Hadn’t heard of 14d, but got it from the wordplay and checkers, was my LOI. I liked 9&27a and 17d, but my favourite was 16d. Was 2* / 4* for me.

  30. It’s always frustrating when there’s a word (animal…) you’ve never heard of when it’s the only one you can’t do to complete the grid! Its Latin name is bang on how it made me feel..(low brow….sorry in such high brow company). Thank you for the always excellent blog. I use it all the time. Just never comment but felt like it today.

  31. I really enjoyed this. I thought 16d was an excellent clue that I didn’t really twig until I got the checkers. I also thought the surfaces were very smooth, such as the amusing 24d.

  32. Another delightful Monday offering, oh that they were all like this. I knew the 14d but never realised it was a thrush. Thanks to all

  33. Well I managed a lot of this on my own but would never have got 16d which did hold up that side quite a bit. Many thanks to Pommers and Campbell. Strangely I find myself without a book to read for the first time in ages. Any suggestions? Will visit book and wool shop today- maybe time to get knitting and crocheting. Have inundated my family with blankets, cushions and throws over the last two years so might be time to get some made for friends. Onwards and upwards.

  34. Just testing I can leave a comment. Tried several times using different means last night and my posts disappeared.

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