DT No 30267 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT No 30267

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30267

Hints and tips by StephenL

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ****

Good morning everyone a bright and pleasantly warm South Devon coast.

No Ray T today, he’s on Toughie duty but his fans need worry not as the setter has given us a very fine puzzle, with just a couple of parsings needing extra thought due to some nice misdirection in the wordplay.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.


1a Self-righteous musician soon struggles keeping time (13)
SANCTIMONIOUS: Anagram (struggles) of the preceding two words and (keeping) the abbreviation for Time. I could illustrate this with so many people!

9a Name on envelope is American banker, receiving treat (9)
ADDRESSEE: Start with the abbreviation for American. Add a river (banker) that forms part of the border between England and Wales into which is inserted a synonym of treat as a verb.

10a Retiring, some colleague I’d admired for so long (5)
ADIEU: Reversed and hidden (retiring some) in the clue.

11a Beg guide to follow map at last (5)
PLEAD: The final letter of maP plus a synonym of guide or show.

12a Barely moves sideways, being lazy (4)
IDLE: Remove the outer letters (barely) of a verb meaning to move sideways or furtively

13a Avoid lowest cricket score (4)
DUCK: A fairly straightforward double definition, one a verb, the other a noun.

15a Wandering up to bet on defeat (7)
OUTPLAY: Anagram (wandering) of UP TO plus a verb that could mean place money on or bet.

17a Gadgets son owned, periodically no good in retrospect (7)
DOODAHS: Start with the abbreviation for Son, add a synonym of owned, the alternate letters of nOgOoD and reverse (in retrospect) the lot.

18a Finds flat belonging to Princess of Wales, reportedly (7)
LOCATES: Here we need homophones of a synonym of flat as an adjective (in mood perhaps) and how we may say something belongs to the rather lovely Princess of Wales.

20a Fixed head of tool piercing smoothed wooden surface (7)
PLANTED: Insert (piercing) the initial letter of Tool into a surface that has been smoothed by a carpenter perhaps.

21a Skipping small cake for ice cream (4)
CONE: Remove (skipping) the abbreviation for Small from a cake typically used in a cream tea (cream on first folks).


22a Car of Italian, on vacation, entering motorway (4)
MINI: Insert the outer letters (on vacation) of ItaliaN into a major motorway

23a Back Labour against a Conservative plot (5)
CABAL: Start with an abbreviation for LABour, add A from the clue, the abbreviation for Conservative and reverse (back) the lot.

26a Take place of old scoundrel nursing cold (5)
OCCUR: The abbreviation for Old and a 3-letter scoundrel go around (nursing) the abbreviation for Cold.

27 Revealing drama ultimately BBC boss acquires with German money (9)
ADMITTING: Start with the ultimate letter of dramA. Add the initials for the title of the BBC boss into which is inserted the German word for “with” and an informal word for some money or coins.

28a Swimmer in biker gear? (13)
LEATHERJACKET: The name of this fish is also, if split 7,6 some clothing typically worn by a motorcyclist.


1d Hobbyist, one with a very full passport? (5,9)
STAMP COLLECTOR: A mildly cryptic definition based upon what’s entered into one’s passport when entering a new country.

2d Wearing nothing, good to go in for jab (5)
NUDGE: Insert the abbreviation for Good into an adjective meaning naked or unclothed.

3d Surveying instrument, article newly tooled bearing inventor’s origin (10)
THEODOLITE: Start with the definite article and add an anagram (newly) of TOOLED, into which is inserted (bearing) the initial letter of Inventor.

4d Bewilder dim Greek character, we hear (7)
MYSTIFY: Two homophones (we hear) needed here, one of a synonym of dim as in weather maybe and the other of a Greek letter. Nobody bewildered here, I love how the youngsters in the crowd are enjoying and appreciating this timeless classic from one of my very favourite bands.

5d Something a tailor might have done caused irritation (7)
NEEDLED: This synonym of irritated or mildly annoyed could also describe something a tailor did when sewing.

6d Eggs left in cricket ground (4)
OVAL: The plural of a female reproductive cell and the abbreviation for Left.

7d Caffeine, maybe it’s lifting briefly Scottish island worker (9)
STIMULANT: Start with a reversal (lifting) of ITS, add all but the last letters of a name for a Scottish Island and a working insect.

8d Sweet girl this duke upset has photo taken regularly (7,7)
TURKISH DELIGHT: Anagram (upset) of the preceding three words with the alternate (taken regularly) of pHoTo. I wonder which Duke and which perhaps not so sweet girl the setter has in mind? Good clue.

14d Star tours racecourse, one somewhere in Canada (4,6)
NOVA SCOTIA: Place a typically bright star around an English racecourse and the letter that looks like the Roman numeral one.

16d Type of college in Switzerland a client freely describes (9)
TECHNICAL: Anagram (freely) of A CLIENT goes around (describes) the IVR code for Switzerland.

19d Leaves mum drinking half of pina colada (7)
SPINACH: An interjection requesting quiet (mum) goes around (drinking) the first half of PINAColada. Good spot setter!

20d Comparatively prudish male enthralled by book (7)
PRIMMER: Insert the abbreviation for Male into a textbook used for basic teaching.

24d Flash British ice-skating arena changing hands (5)
BLINK: Start with the abbreviation for British and append an ice-skating arena having changed the abbreviation for Right to that of Left.

25d Song, cover released by artist Carey (4)
ARIA: Remove (released) the outer letters of the first name of the female singer with the surname Carey.

Excellent, I particularly liked 9&12a plus 8d. Which ones were your winners?.

Quicke Pun: Ceiling + Wax = Sealing Wax.




100 comments on “DT No 30267
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  1. At the risk of mentioning tea again (didn’t some people get excited!) this was definitely a two pot puzzle. Nearly chucked it all in after the first pass with only a few solves to my name, but then gradually got a foothold and decided to soldier on. Glad I did as it turned out to be the best one of the week so far.
    With a sideways reference to 28a, did anyone see an Ollie Reed film the other day called ‘The Damned’? absolute rubbish.
    Back to the crossword though, favourites today were the very cryptic 27a and 4d, let’s see if tomorrow can top this one.

    1. What about 1971 and Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave in “The Devils”.? I walked out after half an hour the only time I’ve ever done so!

      1. Not Ken Russell’s finest hour though he went on to make much worse. It was critically mauled at the time I believe & rightly so. Remember seeing it around 1980 in a late night KR double bill with Women In Love & having to sit through it as it was on first.

  2. 4*/5*. I found parts of this very challenging – tougher than most Friday back-pagers. However, it was extremely enjoyable with great clueing and lovely smooth surfaces throughout. Almost every clue was a candidate for favourite and, after quite a struggle to decide, I have finally selected 13a, 27a & 19d as my podium choice.

    Many thanks to the setter for the fun and to SL for the review.

  3. RD says this was challenging, and I would agree, but it was eminently solvable as the wordplay and clue structures were very fair and accurate. All the definitions were excellent, but I have to single out my final entry and favourite, 27a.

    A big thank you to our setter for the challenge, and to SL for his hard work.

  4. I think SL’s rating fair for this Friday teaser (continuing the tea theme!) I needed his hints to fully understand the answers to 12, 18 and 27a so thanks SL. Highlights for me were the hidden homophone in 4d and 19d my COTD. A good end to the week so thank you setter.

    1. Don’t worry, NAS, I’ve been convinced all day that it is Friday. Maybe it was the trip to my dentist that flummoxed me?

  5. NAS, I think it is still Thursday, although the order of difficulty or this weeks crosswords has rather addled my brain!

    This was certainly trickier than the last 2 days and initially I thought I was doomed with only 3 clues done first time round. However one or two of the long ones clicked into place and then I got going and did complete it, but without fully understanding a couple – 27a and 22a which I needed the hints to explain the parsing of. I thought overall it was brilliant and it is worth persisting at.

    Many thanks to the setter and StephenL

  6. Hugely enjoyable. The four long ones went in easily enough giving me a good start, but I got held up in the trickier SE corner. This was partly of my own making since I had unwittingly used the plural ending for 5d giving me the wrong checking letter for 17a, and consequently an answer that made little sense. It took me far too long to sort out my Canadian geography and 23a, although a word known to me is not part of my day to day language. Finally, I was left with the very clever and convoluted 27a which had me scurrying to the hints for parsing help. Overall favourite today was 4d. Thanks to our setter and to StephenL for his help.

  7. I was lucky enough to get some of the long clues around rhe edge of the grid and 3d straight away. The clues were often challenging but 5he logic of the parsing was always clear. It was the most enjoyable back pager for a fe weeks.The anagrams, especially 1a,8d and 3d were excellent and the homophone at 4d was my COTD, closely followed by the Lego clue, 27a. I could go on all day because there were smany little gems in this puzzle. Thanks to, SL for the hints and to the compiler for a cracking crossword.

  8. Certainly the trickiest of the week’s back-pagers thus far & very enjoyable too. A quick reappearance for the moreish 8d confection – preferred today’s clue to Django’s Toughie. Last in was 17a & a bit of a head scratch despite it being a term I use a lot. Pick for me 15a.

  9. Challenging but rewarding to finally finish. Who else thought of Diana when they saw “Princess of Wales” ?? ;)

  10. I have a feeling that this is another of my ‘two favourite setters’ days to judge by the number of ticks on my sheet for this one!
    I was a bit ‘dim’ where the Greek character was concerned and only knew of the 28a creature as a lawn invader so that was something new learnt today.
    I’m sure I should prune my list as RD did but can’t stand to leave any of them out – gold stars going to 18,21&23a plus 1,4,19&24d.

    Many thanks to our setter and to Stephen for the review – even though he does get confused where the correct construction of a 21a cake is concerned. OK Gazza, I know you’ll agree with his upside down version!

    1. It’s mainly those contrary Devonians who add cream first. Cornish folk, most of the rest of the UK and, significantly, the late Queen Elizabeth II all correctly and logically apply jam (a spread) first with cream (a topping) second. And, visually, it also looks much better that way.

      1. Cream goes where butter would, as it’s a substitute for butter here. Jam goes on top. You wouldn’t put jam on toast (or bread) and then butter it!

  11. Another ‘guess the Ray T substitute day’ and the excellent two element/one indicator 4d homophone and, as RD says, smooth surfaces throughout suggests to me that I should be putting my five bob on Silvanus, overall 2.5*/4.5*.

    Candidates for favourite – 11a, the aforementioned 4d, 7d, 14d, and 19d – and the winner is 4d.

    Thanks to Silvanus, or whomsoever if my five bob goes down the drain, and thanks to Stephen L.

  12. A tricky puzzle today with challenging parsing as per Wyn.
    A new synonym for treat in 9a, confirmed by my Chambers , liked 17a, not seen the definition for a while..
    Not heard of 28a as a fish,( thanks SL) as far as I am aware it is the name of an kind of insect larvae which turns into a daddy long legs!`
    Enjoyed the solve and a ****/****.Favourite was 7d, a top draw charade,closely followed by 16d and 18a-very clever.

  13. I got through this one, eventually. I made a complete hash of several clues. I was convinced that the 9 letter word in 1d had to be “traveller”. 2d I thought was “barge”. Bare with a “g” in it. I needed the review for 21a. I do not consider a scone to be a cake. 17a made me smile. Thank you setter and SL.

    1. One definition of scones is: Baked pastries that originated in Scotland in the early 1500s. But don’t quote me …

  14. I knew this was going to be fun to solve as soon as I saw myself described at 1a. One of the great pleasures of being of more mature years is that one can get away with being appallingly pompous. I gain great satisfaction in certain situations by declaiming “I beg your pardon?” in an insufferable Bertie Wooster voice. Equally alarming to those around one is to call out to a member of staff by piping up with an “I say!” to gain attention. My sister and my niece have banned me from waving a napkin to gain the attention of a waiter or waitress, which is a shame as it is enormously satisfying.

    The best places to carry out these actions are where they are most unexpected, like a football stadium or a municipal tip.
    It’s a very rewarding pastime and beats 1d into a cocked hat.

    Thanks to the setter and Stephen Of The Dumnonii

  15. Scratched my head over the parsing of a few of these (12a, 4d, 21a, 9a to name a few) but managed to work them out eventually over a mug of 7d. COTD 17a which reminded me of Grandad when he couldn’t remember the names for things. Thanks setter, thanks SL.

  16. Quite a joyous workout for me, which took two sessions to finish, and I confess to being held up a bit (and thus disgruntled, just a bit) when ‘doodads’ wouldn’t work (and of course wouldn’t parse). I actually prefer the UK version, though over here, we reserve that lovely word for “De Camptown Races” (or, jokingly, to cut someone high-and-mighty or 1a down to proper size). What a terrific puzzle! So many favourites, but I’ll settle on 17a as my COTD. Just because. Thanks to Stephen and (could it be?) Silvanus? ****/****

    The Beam Toughie today is a real masterpiece coming from the great Mr T.

  17. I agree with more or less everything that has been said, great Guzzle. My last one in was 17a – gadget? Well I am sure it is a whatjemecallit or a thingamebob – You know. I have never tried waving my napkin at a waiter – but I am impressed that Terence takes one to a football match or municipal tip, on the off chance that there will be an opportunity to wave it. Thankyou to the Setter and to SL for explaining 17a. Strange how fairly obscure phrases like 8d will crop up within a few days of each other. Have a lovely Easter everyone, and may the Force be with you. ( I have no idea what that means but it sounds good). By the way, Merusa, I looked up that Rose woman as you suggested and was horrified!

    1. I’m not sure “that Rose woman” is responsible, it appears she’s a good friend of the lovely Kate. I think it’s the trolls finding “news” on a slow day in order to sell papers or whatever. They’re dangerous as some idiots will believe them.

        1. Didn’t know that, thanks, though I expect it will set the forked tongues wagging again. I think both Charles and Camilla are both very refined, sensitive, intelligent people, and I think they truly care. Leave ’em and their family alone.

          1. Absolutely. The press have much to answer for – except the sainted Telegraph which gives us
            these wonderful guzzles.

    2. I believe you have the months mixed up, DG. It is to do with the Star Wars films in which it was often said “May The Force be with you”.

      Ergo, May 4th became to be known as Star Wars Day.

      Think about it! 😎

      Happy Easter!

  18. Very confidently put the American “doodads’ for 17A (well, I do live here). Fortunately–or unfortunately, depending on your viewpoint– it didn’t affect any other answers. 8D jumped right out at me since it was also an answer in yesterday’s Toughie. Today’s favorite is 20D. Thanks to SL and the setter.

  19. Not the friendliest ever Thursday puzzle IMHO. Some good clues but some stinkers too.
    For me a DNF without cheats.


    Favourites include 1a, 13a, 28a, 14d & 24d
    New words in 3d & 20d
    Clues I could not fathom were 20a, 22a, 27a & 4d

    Nonetheless thanks to setter and StephenL

  20. A really excellent Thursday puzzle. Great clues, a decent challenge and a very enjoyable tussle. I’ve ticked nearly half the clues and will select 19d as my favourite. 3.5*/4.5*.

  21. Many thanks to StephenL for another excellent blog and to all those commenting, I’m pleased that some of you guessed it was me. Although she didn’t mention it, I hope Miss TFide liked 4d ;-)

    May I wish everyone an eggscellent Easter holiday (sorry).

    1. Many thanks for popping in and confirming what many suspected Silvanus and of course for another top puzzle. Happy Easter to you too.

    2. I am so sorry Silvanus, how rude of me to not thank you for giving me my own special clue…..I feel very honoured.

      Happy Easter to you too and many thanks for the fun puzzle today.

    3. Just read through the comments & saw that I’d neglected to thank you (&Stephen) for the puzzle which I’ve also looked through on the iPad now I’m home. Solving a puzzle on the phone in between teeing groups off on the golf course isn’t really conducive to getting a proper appreciation of a puzzle’s merits but thoroughly enjoyed it nevertheless.

    4. Thank you, silvanus for a fun work out. I wish you and your loved ones a great Easter and I am not yolking. 🤣🤣

  22. A great puzzle as always from Silvanus. My favorite has to be my birthplace at 14d.

    By the way, Stephen, in 25d Miss Carey only needs to remove her top and not both her top and bottom.

  23. A lurker since the start, I’ve never commented as today is the first day I actually completed the crossword on the same day as publication! Previously we had only bought the ST and I nurtured the SPP all week sneaking it into the little room as and when I could (being self-employed no coffee breaks for me) and trying to make it last until Friday, when I would seek help from here for any clues I hadn’t completed. Then the ST put their price up to £4 and my DH went on strike and I had withdrawal symptoms, so in desperation to give me my fix, he signed up to the puzzle page and now I get the crossword everyday (I think DH maybe regretting his parsimonous decision). At first I was amazed at how different the clues were by different compilers and I learnt that Chalicea is probably my soul sister. Today, I was surprised to learn it was Silvanus (I am still recovering from that “doh” moment from last Friday when I could not figure out what sewing had to do with the number 14 – 14 in my book being a rugby right winger and it was only midnight two days later that I suddenly remembered Clue 14), because I found I was whizzing through with great enjoyment. Only real problem was 27a and I needed the parsing hints for 4d and 21a. Many thanks to Silvanus and StephenL.

    1. Well done and welcome to the blog Anne. Now that you’ve broken cover hope to see more of you in the future.

    2. Welcome Anne. I’m also a big Chalicea fan. I did these crosswords for many years when our daughters were watching Playschool. There was a long gap after we moved across the pond and it was difficult to get a DT here (pre internet). In my final years of working, I would do the crossword at my desk, albeit surreptitiously, snatching quick looks throughout the day. Now retired, it’s the morning brain workout over breakfast. So I do appreciate how you used to savour the ST and make it last the week.

      1. Ha ha, back in the early 70’s when I worked for one of those over staffed conglomerates, there were three of us and we would spend from start of day to the coffee trolley (oh yes, those were the days, coffee lady with coffee and cakes) on the daily DT Crossie, then over coffee break we would confer and complete them during the day. Then I had a baby and that was the end of my crosswords for many many years.

  24. I had trouble with some of the parsings – 9a for example – so there were a few bung ins. Other than those, I found it most enjoyable with just the right amount of head scratching. I did not know 28a was fish as I have only ever known it as the larva of the cranefly. Loved the gadgets at 17a but my COTD is 19d with Mum drink only a half.

    Thank you, Silvanus for the fun. Thanks to StephenL for explaining a couple for me.

  25. I thought this was a funny old puzzle, a lot just went straight in, others needed ehelp. 1d, 3d, 14d for example were obvious, I can only think of that racecourse, though I suppose if I search far enough in my brain I’ll find others. Others were easy enough to solve but I had no idea of the “why”, 9a (treat? I guess so), 27a, 8d, I just wrote in the answers and figured I’d let StephenL explain them. I’ve never heard of 28a, that was one of those needing ehelp. Fave was 4d, loved it, 18a, and many others.
    Thanks Silvanus for the fun, and StephenL for unravelling so much.

  26. I have found all four days this week very similar. Steady progress towards the last half dozen clues, ⁷come back later and after a bit of poking in they go. Hoping tmrw will follow suit🤞
    Nothing to do with the clue but quite pleasing to find Atlas lurking after map was mentioned in 11a.

  27. An enjoyable albeit a “ Curate’s egg” of a puzzle 😳 ***/*** so many clues were so very straightforward with a few very difficult to parse 🤔 Favourites were 1 & 8 down 👍 Many thanks to Stephen L for his help in understanding and to Silvanus

  28. Not a walk in the park but a very satisfying workout once I got going. SE toughest corner. Flat in 18a didn’t ring a bell so bunged in. In company with many bloggers above my Fav was 4d. Thank you Silvanus and StephenL without whom I did in fact somehow manage to complete but it’s always good to know there is a fallback position.

  29. For me not so much fun as yesterday but completed after a day in Gloucester. NE last in. Did not parse 9 and 27a so thanks hinter. Thanks setter. Only ones I seem to have starred are 1 -4 and 24d.

  30. This was a half and half puzzle for me. Half went in reasonably quickly, with the other half proving more difficult. After looking at a few hints for those remaining, it’s clearly above my pay grade. Or just that I do have trouble getting on Silvanus’ wavelength. Enjoyed what I could do, and hoping we’re not in for a stinker tomorrow.

  31. I must have been on wavelength as this fairly flew in. A really good and enjoyable crossword as was the toughie. Favourite was 19d. Thanks to Silvanus and SL.

  32. 4/3. I found this too difficult to finish without hints. I liked 1d, 9&10a. The latter is my starter word for Wordle for its vowels. Thanks to the setter and SL.

    1. I often use 10a as my seed word for Wordle too. Another one I like is “heist”, strange, I dreamt it one night and it works surprisingly well.

      1. I use 10a as a seed word in Wordle as well. I also use “suave” often along with “pause”. My thinking is get the vowels and the consonants will follow. Mind you, it is rather depressing when the seed word draws a total blank.

        1. The more that are eliminated, the fewer letters you have to work with. I like suave, I must try that. Do you Waffle? I really enjoy that, maybe better than Wordle.

          1. I waffle every day, Merusa and, although I do say it myself, rarely fail to solve it. I also like having a go at Squaredle but I often fail to find all the words.

          2. I use READY as my seed word, then TOUCH as my second guess – so far my unbeaten break is 326, so I must have something right, lol. Loved today’s crossword and Beam’s Toughie too.Thank yous to all concerned. :-) :-)

  33. Hurrah
    Got there, unaided.
    But in hours!
    All OK except 12a which I just could not twig until now.
    Great clue.
    Great puzzle.
    A very crowded podium.
    And great surfaces.
    Thanks Silvanus for the challenge and thanks StephenL

  34. Thank you Silvanus for this fun challenge- and SL for the hints
    15a – I had “overlay” for ages – until
    I saw that “rove” wasn’t really “up”
    1a took me ages-annoyingly, but I do like the 4 long clues around the grid – when you solve them!
    Favourites were three 4 letter clues 6d, 13a and 25d

  35. Most enjoyable, happily finding it pretty straightforward and more ‘early week’ than late. Super surfaces as ever.

    1.5 / 3.5

    Thank you Silvanus and StephenL

  36. Late to this after a long day at work, watching Dragons Den. Liked this a lot, helped by quickly getting both the long ones at 1, with some very clever clueing.

    2*/ 4*.

    Fav 23a LOI 4d

    Thanks to setter and StephenL.

  37. So, so entertaining today! I always put smiley faces beside the clues I really enjoy and the crossword was awash with beams today 😊

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