DT 30239 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View comments 

DT 30239 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30239 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club (hosted by crypticsue)

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

One of those mornings where the sun can’t make up its mind whether to shine or not, and one of those Saturday Prize Puzzles where your blogger couldn’t make up her mind which clues to hint, as whatever I pick, someone will say I’ve left out the ones where they wanted help.

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

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

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

Some hints follow.


1a    One looking after passengers on stairs? (6,9)
This person who looks after a particular type of passenger sounds like someone who might also accompany people using stairs

9a    Area where those normally going up are grounded (2-3,4)
A cryptic definition of a place where certain types of transport can’t go

11a    Serious notice in front of shelter (7)
Attention or notice goes in front of a shelter

12a    American settler‘s anguish, we hear (6)
Something an American would use to settle a debt is a homophone (we hear) of a poetical word for anguish

20a    One case or another outside burrow (8)
Another case  goes ‘outside’ a badger’s burrow

23a    Specially made unit of furniture? Just the first (3-3)
A unit, OF (from the clue) and the first letter of furniture

29a    Leave fellows having time with stock for large shop (10,5)
A verb meaning to leave, some fellows and the abbreviation for time, followed by a verb meaning to stock


1d    Touch small metal spike, one of a few we have to hand (10)
A verb meaning to touch and a small metal spike

2d    News being made (11)
Split this news 2,9 and you should understand the rest of the clue

4d    A job so variable leads to abandonment of principles (8)
A (from the clue), a job, a pronoun meaning so and a mathematical variable

14d    Dismal revolutionary beginning to explore London area for dolcelatte? (4,6)
Dismal or miserable, a revolutionary who hasn’t been in crosswords for a while, the ‘beginning’ to explore and an area of London

22d    State half of worthless people will come up in the morning (6)
A reversal (will come up) of the first half of a term relating to worthless people inserted into the abbreviation for morning

25d    Behead mollusc for pound (4)
Remove the head from a mollusc that lives in the sea

27d    Regularly thump ram (3)
The regular (odd) letters of the middle word in the clue

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

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

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

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

The Quick Crossword pun: HIKER + MANNED = HIGH COMMAND 

106 comments on “DT 30239 (Hints)
Leave your own comment 

  1. Found this one rather woolly and imprecise, can’t see the bit about anguish in 12a at all. Can’t say I liked this one today.

    1. I cannot think of anyone who pronounces the synonym for anguish like the synonym for settler. And that applies whichever spelling you use.

  2. I found this a little trickier than some recent Saturdays but still enjoyed it.
    I had a different answer for 12a at first but will avoid the naughty step, when the religiousness of the homophone helped get 4d I thought it will probably trigger a few comments.
    14d favourite for this turophile

  3. Decided early doors it was going to be a Cephas pangram but I can’t find an X so (assuming it can’t be a 3rd proXimal one on the bounce) I’ll have a punt on X-type. Pretty straightforward (unlike Tipcat I didn’t find the clues particularly woolly) with only last in 12a requiring a head scratch. Once I’d twigged the context of settler it immediately became my pick of bunch.
    Thanks to the setter & to CS

  4. Confused of Winnipeg here – an X-less pangram by accident or by design? Whatever, very enjoyable and just right for a SPP. **/****

    Candidates for favourite 28a, 2d, 6d, and 17d – and the winner is 2d.

    Thanks to the setter and CS.

    1. You’ve changed your alias again – this or the previous two will work from now on

      Does reading my hint for 25d help?

      1. Thank you for your email regarding today’s Prize Cryptic Crossword.

        Please accept our apologies for the mistake in this clue. I am unsure how this has happened, as I can see that the clue correctly reads “Behead” in both the print and digital editions of the paper, and on our old puzzles website. I have corrected this online, and so hopefully you can stop pondering what a “bedhead mollusc” might be!

        Thank you again, and I hope you continue to enjoy our puzzles.

        Yours sincerely,

        Chris Lancaster

        1. Thanks for getting that cleared up. I had the answer as a bung in, and only saw the correct clue when I came here to find how to parse it.

  5. Quite tricky.
    But once 1a was sussed, solving more or less flowed.
    Except at last in, 25d which, to my shame, took some time before the proverbial penny.
    So, 2.5*/4*
    Many thanks to the setter and to CS.

  6. Most definitely one of my more rapid solves today, no headscratching and nothing particularly obscure. Tipcat, if you look at 12a again, I think you might kick yourself for not spotting the obvious ;-)
    A most enjoyable, but all too brief Saturday morning brain exercise. Now to see what the GK puzzle holds in store – seldom do I finish that unaided. Thanks to setter and CS

    1. I’ve got the answer to 12a, just can’t see the connection to anguish, think it maybe a term I just don’t know. Sadly as it’s a Saturday puzzle, no-one can really give me a hint.

  7. A bit of a curate’s egg for me. Wilst it was mostly straightforward as SPPs go, tthere were some awkward clues, iincluding a dubious homophone ( probably a question of one’s accent) some rather convoluted lego clues and some unusual synonyms. The best of the clues for me were1a and 14d. Thanks to CS for the hints and to the compiler.

  8. 25d Bedhead mollusc for pound
    Only after reading your hint did I realise this was a misprint, which threw me!

    1. You’ve changed your alias – both versions will work from now on

      There isn’t a misprint in the newspaper version or the one on the ‘old’ Telegraph Puzzles site, but I can now see how you and Team Pope were confused!

    2. Only the DT could publish the same puzzle in three ‘places,’ two electronic and one dead tree, and have an error in one of them!

  9. Took some starting but as always the anagrams came to the rescue. After that it came together but the last in was 12a for which I needed the hint. If you are going to use an obsolete word that is not in the BRB then it should be better clued IMHO.
    Not the best Saturday but not the worst either.
    Thx for the hints

    1. The BRB (Revised 13th Edition) does say that ‘the word’ is (poetic) but I am reasonably certain that does not mean obsolete.

    2. I do agree with you Brian about anagrams. I seem to have an anagram brain and they are always a great help to me.

    3. It is in my 2003 edition of the BRB with both the English and American spellings and two different pronunciations. There is also an historic spelling which is more akin to the French with yet another pronunciation.

  10. Great entertainment this morning that wasn’t too taxing but was fun to solve. I particularly liked the 1 and 9a theme, although the brevity and conciseness of 2d pushed that clue into my favourite slot.

    Thanks to our Saturday setter and CS.

  11. Enjoyed gradually working my way through this pleasant challenge. Would never have thought of that for notice in 11a. Some stretch of pronunciation needed for 12a. Think 7d was new one on me. Couple of simple-minded Favs 1a and 16a. Thank you Mysteron and CS.

  12. Not going to risk my five bob but Huntsman may well have a point – this felt a bit ‘different’ from our usual SPPs.
    Podium places here for 1,3&12a plus 25d.

    Thanks to our setter – please pop in to take a bow – and to CS for the hints and pics.

  13. An X-less pangram but I can never remember which setter such puzzles belong to. Either proXimal or X-Type. Anyway, I did enjoy it and getting the long 1a straight away helped. Once again, I have ticks all over the paper but the ones that stand out for me are 29a and 14d. I pondered for ages over 12a wanting to enter a word that fitted the checkers but I couldn’t parse. Then a massive penny hit me! I thought it was a fantastic clue with a great surface and becomes my COTD.

    Many thanks to the X-less pangram setter for the fun. Thank you, CS for the hints, which I didn’t need but will now look at.

    1. X-less is one of proXimal’s ‘signature formats’ and as he ‘back-paged’ yesterday with his other ‘signature 4-Xer format’ it is very unlikely but not impossible that he is today’s setter.

  14. A fairly gentle SPP helped by two straightforward long clues which gave a good foothold on the puzzle. As touched on further up, the online version has a typo in 25d, which should read “behead” instead of “bedhead”! I couldn’t get the homophone at all for 12a and indeed had another word in for a while. I liked the lego in 4d and the cricket clue (even if it was barely cryptic) 6d. **/***

    Thanks to X-Type (?) and CS

  15. Meant to say – for anyone who has time for another crossword today, there’s a nice NTSPP from our own Shabbo for you to work on.

  16. For me this lacked sparkle today. Greatly helped by getting the two long ones early on. The only hold up was 12a, my LOI for which I resorted to the clue. I think it’s probably a pronunciation thing. Doesn’t work so well here in Yorkshire! Podium places today for 1a, 13d and 17d. Thanks to the compiler and Cripticsue.

  17. Enjoyed it but found parts of it a bit hazy. Can anybody help me with 11a? Have the answer but can’t see why the first part is what it is?

    Thanks to setter and CS

  18. I too was a bit confused by the x-less pangram as, enjoyable though it was, it didn’t have the feel of a proXimal puzzle.

    I thought 12a was a dreadful clue requiring to know a very obscure word which is not quite a homophone. That aside everything was in good order with 1a my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and to CS.

  19. At first I thought this is a bit tricksy for a SPP but suddenly I was off and the whole thing was a Saturday lunchtime delight. I see another pen in the way 😁 Stephen. 1,12,20a and 17,18,22d had daisies but I think 12a took the rosette. With 1a taking the silver. Wonderfully misleading. I am girding my loins for another cold week, I look like an Eskimo already. I cannot wait to be cut out of my vest come May 1st. When DD1 started nursing she told us that they regularly had to cut off clothing which had clearly been worn for months in end. Yuk. Many thanks to Messrs Setter and CS – I was on pangram alert but it didn’t happen.

    1. I will try, yet again, but after nearly fifty years of sending them, in the so-called DT pen has never so much as looked at me! :sad:

    2. A PE teacher friend of mine taught in South Wales and had some children from Polish mining families, who wouldn’t change for PE because they had been sewn into ttheir Winter underwear for the duration and they found disrobing embarassing, particularly in changing rooms at school

        1. I once had to share a bedroom with a Victorian great aunt for one night only thank goodness. She had so many layers of clothing, most of which stayed put. I was pretty convinced that most of them never came off, petticoats, combinations, vests, stays, bloomers, stockings and many others.

      1. I have read that a few centuries ago, the Brits greased themselves with lard and wore flannel underwear for the winter, only taking them off in spring!

  20. Thought this Saturday puzzle was going to end up being a pangram, but unless I really messed up I have no X.

    For me 1.5*/4* for today.

    Favourites were many, but the top five were 1a, 24a, 1d, 8d & 14d — with winner 1a … and 14a as a close second.

    13d was unknown to me but with cross checking letters Mr G helped out.

    Nice puzzle and enjoyable.
    I’ll say thanks to Cephas as it seems like his sort of clueing to me and to CS for hints

  21. Just written a comment – disappeared – try again!!
    I thought this was quite a tricky SPP – certainly for me anyway.
    I started off with the wrong answer for 24a – as BD says if you can’t explain your answer it’s probably wrong . . .
    I’m not sure that I’d get so far as risking a guess at the setter today.
    No particular favourite so thanks to whoever set this one and thanks to CS for the hints.

    1. Hallo Kath, how are you doing?
      I bet you have some hair raising stories to tell about your early nursing experiences!

  22. The straightforward get at 1a helped to get a foothold early on, with the rest falling into place following a clockwise direction. I had the answer to 12a based on the cryptic definition of settled, but must admit I needed Chambers to confirm the homophone for anguish.


    Fav 24a LOI 25d not sure why!

    Thanks to setter and CS

  23. 12a is either the best or the worst–or, given the unhomophonic nature of the answer to me, the most risible–of today’s clues. Of course, in one sense it’s a complete derogation of capitalism and consumerism itself. At any rate, it was my last one in. Enough said. Case closed. 24a made me laugh. as the temple’s walls came tumbling down, and it’s my favourite today. The Quickie took me longer to finish, but only because the Internet blanked out briefly. Thanks to CS and the X-less setter. */***

  24. 2/4. An unusual puzzle for me. Racing start and then a few periods at walking pace. 1a got things off to a fast start but it took me ages to get 12a. In any event enjoyable so thanks to the setter and CS for the hints.

  25. I needed the review to explain 12a. I’ve still got four more clues to solve, so I’ll have another go later. In case I don’t manage to finish, I’ll say my thanks now to the setter and to CS. I didn’t find todays crossword easy.

  26. Fairly scampered through this until I got to 25d as I was convinced it was a completely different pound. I looked up all the molluscs etc. etc. and then driving to the garden centre I repeated the clue over and over again. And David kept answering with the correct answer each time but I just hadn’t thought of that pound. What a huge pdm! Felt awfully stupid but thanks to the setter for an enjoyable puzzle and to CS for the hints. I too will have to be cut out of my vest, and my T shirt, and my long sleeved shirt and my jumpers various! Roll on summer but as we only had 6mm of rain in February can we have a couple of downpours at night please.

    1. I always say I am sure that God is a man. Any woman creating the world would have made it rain mostly at night so that the washing would dry.

      1. Is putting the washing out a woman only pursuit then? 😉 🤷🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️ Not in my neck of the woods! 😇

        1. Far from it, but it has to be done and it is b—– annoying when you have just pegged it all out and it rains. And yes, I do have a tumble dryer but I am saving the planet.

  27. Thanks Setter and CS. Did not need hints and just about managed to parse. I too wondered about the notice in 11a but justified it. I liked the synonym for settler but not so keen on the presumed pronunciation of the answer to 12a. 4d was my LOI. Favourites 28a and 1 3 21 22 and 25d. The last of these was short and sweet but very good.

    1. Thanks for popping in. I enjoyed it because I finished it and especially like 1a. Enjoy the rest of the weekend. As long as I got it right I found no problem with 12a. Will wait for the review before feeling smug.

    2. Terrific puzzle, Cephas. Thank you. Unlike others, I thought 12 was brilliant. Thank you for popping in, it is appreciated greatly. :good:

  28. Straightforward until it wasn’t. Didn’t like 12a at all which we needed the hint to parse, never having heard of the anguish synonym, hadn’t heard of 4d either. Favourite was 1a. Thanks to the setter and CS.

  29. It rained last night and normally that would mean crossword in bed and maybe a comment or two early on. But not to be … at 5 in the morning lightning hit the house blowing bits of electrical equipment all over the place!

    A frightening experience👀

    So instead of slumbering I was checking out infrastructure … the bolt hit the TV dish and so with that we lost the TV/Receiver and a laptop. As we don’t watch TV (but the licence is collected on our electic bill!) we don’t have too much of a problem with that. The internet which is also a dish (Starlink) not 1 yard from the tv dish survived!

    Further checks revealed the electric gates are in trouble and something is amiss with the well. An expensive storm where only two bolts occurred.

    Good to have a crossword later in the day to take my mind off things. I have no problem with 12ac … a penny dropping moment.

    Thanks to setter and CS for the blog.

    1. Wow, Stone Waller! What a tale! I hope you get it all sorted out and thank goodness nobody was hurt – well I sincerely hope not.

      1. Thanks Steve. Nobody hurt but dogs and cat were a bit scatty … the cat you can see in my Avatar.

    2. Good gracious! Where do you live? It sounds awful , poor you. Hope it doesn’t take you too long to get sorted out.

      1. Thanks DG. We live in the Gargano, Puglia. Flash storms are not unusual, but normally there are distant rumblings so we are forewarned. This one was out of the blue and so was the air.

    3. I think you’ve had more than your fair share of misfortune recently, thank goodness scatty pets and expensive repair work have been the worst you’ve had to contend with on this occasion.

      1. Yes Jane … this is like lightning striking several times … for those in the dark in the last two years I have had two cancer ops, a double by-pass and have been falsely accused (and condemned without trial) for offending someone on Facebook.

        You couldn’t make it up!

        1. Good grief Stone Waller, you have been through the mill, so sorry to hear all this. Is your pusscat in the picture trying to help? Don’t worry about offending someone on Facebook, these days most people seen to get offended about really trivial things.

          1. Thanks. If you look closely you will see the cat may have solved 1ac. As fior the offence I have been fined 4000€ and/or 3 years in prison. It is not a light thing!

            This apparently can happen in the civilised society we call the EU! It so happens I share a real name with a very famous English author. An Italian has used this name on facebook and the offended person went looking for the name on the local registers and found me.

            1. I am so sorry to hear all that has happened to you, you certainly have had more than your fair share of troubles.

              1. Thanks MissTFide. But of course there are so many suffering far more, e.g in Ukraine.

                But it still sucks!😎

  30. Just a perfect puzzle for me, didn’t even have a problem with 12a with thoughts of Jerusalem. How many people were misdirected with 10a Joanna after our recent example? I had to look up 14d, new to me, but I didn’t need help with anything else. How on earth can a girl choose a fave of that lot, every one a winner.
    Thank you Cephas for all the fun, much appreciate your hints and pics CrypticSue!

  31. I finished almost completed unaided, had to do some googling to understand why 12a was what it was (thanks for the hints). I enjoyed this one and had no particular favourites.

    I had a lovely day out at Wisley meeting friends, fairly chilly but dry and the spring flowers are looking beautiful already.

    Thank you to CS for the hints and Cephas for the puzzle

  32. This went fairly well for me, I still don’t know what word the solution to 12a is supposed to sound like. 22d is my favourite being concise and witty. Thanks to CS and Cephas

  33. Thank you Crypticsue. I am grateful for any extra help. I love the weekend reviews because I have no willpower and give in to clicking on the answer on the weekdays.
    We have been digging out from last night’s snowstorm. So pretty but then I clear the little deck, the snow on the driveway is oddly blueish as Alan maneuvers the snowblower, he is old and left the navy long ago but has retained his ability to swear!
    No favorites yet but already a few giggles.

    1. Hallo Caroline – I sympathise with you regarding the snow – they are threatening East Anglia with snow next week – which I am not looking forward to! The Snowdrops, Hellebores, Daffodils and Crocuses are looking so pretty at the moment.
      There is nothing like a good swearword to relieve the tension!

Join the Conversation, Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 2 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video, document, spreadsheet, interactive, text, archive, code, other. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop file here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.