DT 30250 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30250

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30250

Hints and tips by Mr K

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BD Rating  -  Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

Hello, everyone, and welcome to an enjoyable Friday puzzle whose grid contains every letter in the alphabet except X. I’m afraid that work today has left no time to search for pictures. I will try to make up for the omission next week. 

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. Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.



1a    Police officer's outstanding aim, tackling place of iniquity (14)
SUPERINTENDENT:  Follow outstanding or excellent with aim or goal containing (tackling) a place of iniquity 

8a    Disassemble huge uncovered shelters near island (5)
UNRIG:  HUGE minus its outer letters (uncovered) contains (shelters) abbreviations for near and for island

9a    School backing measure to stock soft type of drink (8)
SCHNAPPS:  The abbreviation for school is followed by the reversal (backing) of measure or range containing (to stock) the musical abbreviation for soft 

11a   In bar, tea's ordered for such a person, perhaps (9)
ABSTAINER:  The wordplay gives us the answer as an anagram (ordered) of IN BAR TEA’S. The entire clue can serve as the definition 

12a   Swine scratching rear of Polo in B-road? (5)
BRUTE:  Another word for B-road minus the last letter of (scratching rear of) POLO 

13a   Sound from the old record (4)
YELP:  An archaic form (old) of “the” with the abbreviation for a long playing record 

14a   Returning to Nepal a journalist sampled hot pepper (8)
JALAPENO:  The answer is hidden in the reversal of (returning … sampled) the remainder of the clue 

17a   Learner with document showing feature of terrain (8)
LANDFORM:  Link together the single letter for a learner driver, a synonym of “with”, and a document with spaces to be filled out 

19a   Mineral content in stale cake, just the very first piece (4)
TALC:  The inner letters (content in) of STALE with the first letter of (…, just the very first piece) of CAKE 

23a   Reason fever overwhelms resistance (5)
ARGUE:  A usual fever contains (overwhelms) the physics symbol for electrical resistance 

24a   A pigeon's trained by English for spying (9)
ESPIONAGE:  An anagram (trained) of A PIGEON’S is followed by the single letter for English 

25a   Title of hospital with target date failing to open (8)
HEADLINE:  The single letter for hospital with a serious target date minus its first letter (failing to open

26a   Latches on and sticks (5)
TWIGS:  A double definition. Latches on as in gets or understands 

27a   Electric appliances or the gas alternative put before consumers (7,7)
STORAGE HEATERS:  An anagram (alternative) of OR THE GAS with another words for consumers



1d    Protecting queen with lackey, use an orderly beyond reproach (7,5)
SQUEAKY CLEAN:  The chess abbreviation for queen contained by (protecting … with) an anagram (orderly) of LACKEY USE AN 

2d    Friend occupied by certain upcoming examination (7)
PERUSAL:  A friend or mate containing (occupied by) the reversal (upcoming, in a down clue) of certain or definite

3d    Make cross after rotating length of ruler (6)
REGNAL:  The reversal (after rotating) or make cross or annoy is followed by the single letter for length 

4d    Snooping on revolutionary rat (6)
NOSING:  The reversal (revolutionary) of ON from the clue with rat or inform on 

5d    Heavenly being among others receiving present (8)
ETHEREAL:  A Latin abbreviation for “among others” containing (receiving) present or now 

6d    Lazy person arranged date with a bed (8)
DEADBEAT:  An anagram (arranged) of DATE A BED 

7d    Write about melody part of Holst's famed suite (7)
NEPTUNE:  The reversal (about) of write or author is followed by a synonym of melody 

10d   She cries over moving forms of poetry (6,6)
HEROIC VERSES:  An anagram (moving) of SHE CRIES OVER 

15d   Wrongdoer gathering demise in advance (8)
OFFENDER:  Demise or termination inserted in advance or tender 

16d   Disengage and go very bitter (8)
FREEZING:  Disengage or release and go or energy

18d   Ignore new vote to secure leader of government (7)
NEGLECT:  The abbreviation for new with vote or choose containing (to secure) the first letter of (leader of) GOVERNMENT 

20d   Greed putting odd bits of veal into a staple foodstuff (7)
AVARICE:  The odd letters of VEAL inserted into A from the clue and a staple foodstuff 

21d   Rate endless church sermon (6)
SPEECH:  Rate of change of position minus its last letter (endless) with the map abbreviation for church 

22d   Conservative with flair upset opposing side (6)
CONTRA:  An abbreviation for Conservative with the reversal (upset) of flair or talent 


Thanks to today’s setter. Top clue for me was 27a. Which clues did you like best?

The Quick Crossword pun:  WATT + ZAP = WHATSAPP

67 comments on “DT 30250
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  1. Maybe it’s just me, but I found this to be a very tough slog with very little amusement. No favourites at all today, sorry to our setter, just not my thing today.

  2. So, the Friday triumvirate P, Z, S sequence has been broken as today we have a pro_imal, not an ‘in sequence’ Silvanus, when we had a Zandio last week and a proXXXXimal only 2 weeks ago. Nevertheless, very enjoyable and not too challenging – **/****

    Outstanding favourite – 1a.

    Thanks to proXimal and Mr K.

  3. I loved this stonker of a puzzle from the X-man, right up my “B-road” The wordplay was clever and witty throughout.
    I thought 14,24,&26a were as “good as it gets” examples of their clue types, 27a was very smart, 12a made me laugh as did 1&16d but my favourite has to be the brilliant 11a.
    Great stuff.
    Many thanks to ProXimal and to Mr K.

    1. I don’t think I need bother, you have said it all. 5d was brilliant although we have had et al in the last few days I think. Great puzzle.

  4. The gentlest Friday for a while I thought with solid and fair clues at **/****. I thought the partial anagram in 27a well hidden and 4&7d both great but today’s prize goes to 12a which was cunning. Thanks Mr K and the setter.

  5. This was a very clevey clued puzzle, almost too clever for my humble self and finishing it was so difficult it was like pulling teeth. Joint COTD’s were 1a, a superb Lego clue and 1d an equally great anagram. Other contenders were 9a, 26d and 11a. Thank you to Peoximal for th brain work-out and to Mr K for the hints, which were needed to check my parsing of half a dozen clues.

  6. 3*/5*. This X-less pangram provided an eXcellent finish to the week. My last one in and favourite was 16d, with special mentions for 1a, 14a, 24a, 10d & 21d.

    Many thanks to proXimal and to Mr K.

  7. Really enjoyed this absolutely cracking puzzle. On glancing at the first few A & D clues my mind and print-out were both blank and I double-checked that this was indeed the backpager. Started instead with a toehold in the E/SE and most of the grid then fell pretty swiftly, with the exception of a few in the SW corner where the deceit and disguises had me flummoxed for a good while.

    Great surfaces, lovely misdirection, ticks all over the place. Special mentions to 1a, 9a, 24a (good surface and IIRC, quite true!) 1d, 3d, 10d, with COTD 14a for the wonderful surface read and rekrul.

    3* / 4*

    Many thanks indeed to setter and Mr K

  8. Superb and beguiling and the best backpager of the week for me. With one tricky clue after another, I found myself bouncing all over the place until that happy finish. 11a and 12a lead the pack of winners, with 16d, 25a, 26a, and 27a all duking it out for the remaining honours. And a special Clarkie goes to the week’s best rekrul at 14a. Thanks to Mr K and proXimal. 2.5*/5*

  9. I take my hat off to those who found this on the gentle side. Me – I’m going for a lie down in a darkened room! I absolutely loved it. Many clues were both devious and misleading and even the anagrams were clever and well hidden without any silly surface reads. It’s difficult to pick favourites today but I’ll go for 11a, 19a, 1d and 5d with 26a in first place for finding two meanings, neither of which is the one that immediately springs to mind. Thanks to ProXimal for the total pleasure and Mr K who’s hints I didn’t need,but who’s puss pics I missed.

  10. A scatter gun approach today, apart from the parsing of 8a -did’nt like the abbreviation for near , thoroughly enjoyed the solve and the clever cluing.
    Liked the periferal charades which greatly helped the difficulty, going for a ***/****.
    Favourite was the reverse lurker in 14a, top draw.

  11. I thought this was excellent. My last one in was 26a; a quick run through the letters in the grid indicated that a W was missing.

    Many thanks to proXimal and Mr K. 3*/5*

  12. Looks as though Mr Ed is determined to keep us on our toes where the ‘spot the setter’ game is concerned although Mr X does invariably leave his signature for us.
    Very enjoyable solve today with my winners being 1,13&27a plus 16d.

    Thanks to proXimal and to the busy Mr K for making time to bring us the review.

  13. 1, 11 and 27a make up my podium today, from an excellent collection of clues. The relative complexity of the puzzle meant I adopted a somewhat scattergun approach to the solving process, but it all worked out nicely. A thoroughly entertaining solve.

    Thanks to proXimal and Mr K.

  14. What a puzzle!
    Brilliant throughout.
    Got there in the end after a 4* struggle.
    Last in 8a and 3d.
    The former, my COTD in a ultra strong field
    Many thanks, proXimal and Mr K

  15. Thoroughly enjoyable, but with a Friday level of head-scratching. 3* / 4*
    Favourites 26a and 27a, pipped on the podium by the excellent “timrek ruls” in 14a
    Thanks to setter and Mr K
    Now to get the splinters out of my fingernails!

  16. Found this a bit on the tough side today, but all solved without the hints. Agree with chriscross re 1a & 1d as super clues.
    Thanks to Mr X and Mr K

  17. Not a pleasurable solve. First run through produced less than a third of the solutions. The second about a half with little idea about the rest. So I tried the Chambers Word Wizard where checkers made its use practical. After a short time I was at the finish line with words on 8a and 3d as the only possible answers but with no idea of why and worries that other clues may have been wrong. But no they were right in a tortuous way that further kills enjoyment .

    14a, 5 and 7d deserve honourable mentions as clues I put a tick by in the first read through. Thank you to Cephas for the struggle and Mr K for the blog.

  18. Too many hints needed for this to be an enjoyable solve, though I did really like 27a.

    Many thanks to Mr K, without whom etc etc. and thanks to setter.

  19. Finally completed this entertaining puzzle which I enjoyed until my iPad kept clearing my answers from half the grid, meaning it took a lot longer as I had to re enter things when ever I acme back to it. All very frustrating. I have done all the usual things for misbehaving apps including restarting it but now it has wiped all my answers. I am using the digital puzzles within the telegraph newspaper app not the separate puzzle app. If anyone else has had this happen or knows the solution please let me know. It has also wiped the quick crossword and codewords.

    I enjoyed the anagrams, 27a and 1a particularly.

    Many thanks to MrK whose hints I needed to understand how to parse a couple and to the setter

    1. Started happening to me too a few weeks ago MissTFide. I’ve used the newspaper app for several years and didn’t have the problem until recently.

  20. An excellent Friday puzzle, which I found a little tricky. Great clues and an enjoyable tussle. Too many top-notch clues to isolate any. 3.5*/4.5*.

  21. Somewhat a tricky and head scratching Friday puzzle this week.


    Favourites include 1a, 13a, 26a & 1d with winner 1d and 26a the runner-up

    Thanks to proXimal and Mr K

  22. Almost no answers in the top half on first pass and I began to fear the worst but the bottom half came to the rescue and I worked steadily back up the grid. I went on pangram alert after the ‘Q’ and the ‘Z’ appeared which helped. An enjoyable and satisfying solve with some super clues the best being 11a. Thanks to ProXimal and Mr. K.

  23. For all the newbies lurking out there, despair not. This is a very difficult puzzle, and worthy of Toughie status. Don’t let it put you off. The really clever solvers delight in this level of challenge, but be reassured we don’t all claim to be that brilliant, and even if we have been doing these since the dark ages, Fridays often prove just about impenetrable.

  24. Very enjoyable Friday fare with a great mix of clue-types and difficulty. I got 1a straight off the bat which produced a smooth flowing solve. Rather shamefully I didn’t know Holst’s famed work for 7d and had to work it out from checkers + wordplay for my POI, and the missing Z in the x-less pangram got me over the line on 16d for my actual LOI. Another top selection of clues which I’ll narrow to 27a, 12a and the gold to 26a, a super DD. **/****

    Thanks to Messrs X & K

  25. A real head scratcher but so worth sticking with. 1d was my absolute favourite but the paper is littered with stars. It has been a funny old week – I did finish yesterdays guzzle but too late to post anything, I seem to have been busy busy. We have now got two empty almshouses which are being refurbished (both having had long term residents) and it seems that daily the workmen are reporting new problems. Who would be a trustee? I’ve done it for 48 years, where are the younger generation to take over? Anyway, Cinema night tonight – Where The Crawdads Sing, I do hope it comes up to the book which was a wonderful read. My thanks to Messrs Setter and Hinter and I’ll forgive you just this once Mr K!

    1. Enjoy your Cinema night, DG. It was, for me, a perfect representation of the book – right down to the choice of actors. How rarely that happens!

      1. You are so right. That is the beauty of a book, you can see it your own way in your own head. But this film did pretty well, wonderfully atmospheric but I couldn’t help worrying about mosquitoes and we never saw that alligator again did we

  26. Great puzzle that took a lot of unravelling – RHS went in quite easily but not so the LHS. 16d my last one in and became my favourite. Talking about films of books – often so disappointing – I thought the Kite Runner was absolutely spot on. Anyway thanks to the setter and Mr K, although I am missing the usual pics but like DG will forgive you.

  27. Good afternoon
    Well, if I’d had to go to work this afty, I’d never have finished this! As it was, I had to revert to word-searches for 8a, 3d, and also 17a, because I was fixated on a similar word (same first four letters and much more familiar), which prevented me solving 15d.
    A definite “Crikey!!” for 12a and 4d. Thank you to today’s setter and MrK

  28. Phew, that was hard work and I can’t really believe I actually made it but I thoroughly enjoyed the workout. I wonder however whether perhaps one or two seemingly clever clues only just hold water. Surprised to find 8a is actually a word. Relieved I didn’t repeat my DNF of yesterday which was possibly due to having too many things on my mind. Have to admit to bunging in 5d unparsed. Fav was 26a. Thank you to Messr. Ron and K.

  29. Gosh, that was tough! I needed too many hints for it to be enjoyable and found it a bit of a slog. Still, it would be a boring world if everything was the same and I know others will have loved this. No ticks – just pleased to get across the finish line.

    Thank you Miss Terry Setter for the workout. Thank you, Mr.K. for the hints and don’t worry about there being no pics – work always comes first after family. :good:

    1. Hi Steve,
      Word of warning about forays into Ballybucklebo – they become addictive! I’m onto book 6 now and think Senf’s close behind me.

      1. I am looking forward to getting to know the place better, Jane. I even find myself wondering what is happening in Ballybucklebo while I’m out walking Hudson. :grin:

      2. You’re so right Jane. I finished the first one then thought I’d better read a different author for a change, but it didn’t happen, I’m now on my second and can’t wait to get back to it!

        1. Interestingly, I borrowed the first one from a good friend who’s a retired GP. She didn’t enjoy it all and doesn’t want to read any of the ones I’ve subsequently purchased from the ‘used’ section of Amazon. I think she found Finlay’s attitude rather reprehensible!

  30. My brain is on sabbatical today, Wordle a phew at 6, Waffle a crash and burn, and this guzzle giving me a headache. The sun is shining, maybe I can get in the pool to have some fun. I was so lost, though some were right on my wavelength, 27a, 1d 7d and 10d. eg. Wotta lotta strange words? I’m going to have to have a session with my dictionary … unrig? Landform?
    Thanks setter but this was not much fun, and thanks Mr. K for getting me over the line, you’re forgiven for lack of pusscats, I’d been looking forward to them!

  31. This guzzle was tough for me…..especially the LHS. Got to the end with a lot of pushing and shoving from the hints…..but it is Friday I guess.
    Lots to like, but I wasn’t keen on Unrig or Landform .

    Thanks to the setter and to busy Mr K.

  32. I know it’s a bit defeatist but I think I shall probably not bother with Friday puzzles for a while – despite generally finishing 3 out of 4 from Monday to Thursday, I never get more than six or seven clues on Fridays!

  33. Certainly a puzzle to put down and come back to, to allow the brain fog to clear! I really enjoyed the chalenge & thought some of the wordplay was excellent.


    Fav 26a LOI 16d

    Thanks to setter and Mr K

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