DT 30300 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30300

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30300

Hints and tips by pommers

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Hola from Almoradí where the weather has finally gone back to normal for the time of year. Temps in low twenties and a quite spectacular thunderstorm last Saturday.  At least it stayed dry for the morning market!

Also pretty normal is this Monday puzzle.  The usual elegant clues and not too hard. There’s five clues involving anagrams so I know a lot of you will be pleased.

As usual my podium three 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           Legitimate line thoroughly unpleasant (6)
LAWFUL:  L(ine) followed by a word meaning thoroughly unpleasant.  For a while I was looking at this clue the wrong way round, d’oh!

5a           Bar over in parlour (6)
SALOON:  O(ver) inserted into (in) another word for a parlour.

10a        One close to Nancy, one of the Mitfords (5)
UNITY:  A word for one or a single thing followed by Y (close to NancY).

11a        Author‘s record win at swimming (4,5)
MARK TWAIN:  The first word of the answer could mean a record or to record and the second is an anagram (swimming) of WIN AT.

12a        Discussion group remains uncertain (7)
SEMINAR:  Anagram (uncertain) of REMAINS.

13a        Budding, infinite number with a pleasant smell (7)
NASCENT:  The letter for an unspecified or infinite number followed by the A from the clue and then a nice smell or perfume.

14a        Put a stopwatch on game of snooker for a specified period? (9)
TIME FRAME:  A word for put a stopwatch on followed by the term used to describe a single game of snooker.  Reminds me of the snooker shoot out.

17a        Book reckless forward (5)
BRASH:  B(ook) followed by a word meaning reckless.

18a        Garden plants in clusters, from what we hear (5)
PHLOX:  These plants sound like (from what we hear) some clusters, of sheep perhaps.

19a        Going nowhere, like a team that’s lost every match? (9)
POINTLESS: I guess this could be described as a double definition.  The word describes an activity that’s not going anywhere and also would describe a team that’s lost every match.

21a        Fabled monster in rhyme, tailless rat (7)
CHIMERA:  A word which can mean rhyme followed by the RAT from the clue but without the T (tailless).

23a        Clothing Australian’s mate left inside (7)
CLOBBER:  An Australian slang term for a mate or pal with an L inserted (L(eft) inside).

25a        Awful nuisance engaging bouncer, ultimately for protection (9)
INSURANCE:  Anagram (awful) of NUISANCE with an R (bounceR ultimately) inserted (engaging).

26a        Onset of storm affected little monkey (5)
SCAMP:  S (onset of Storm) followed by a word meaning affected gives a little monkey as in a mischievous child.

27a        Girl riding, changing ends (6)
INGRID:  Take the word RIDING from the clue and swap the two halves (changing ends).

28a        Extremely reasonable late meal (6)
REPAST: RE (extremely ReasonablE) followed by a word meaning late or gone.


2d           Self-evident statement made by a cross on Irish Sea island (5)
AXIOM: The A from the clue followed by the letter that looks like a cross and then the abbreviation of the island in the middle of the Irish Sea.

3d           Moving quickly to confuse bat (6,3)
FLYING FOX:  A word meaning moving quickly, in an aeroplane perhaps, followed by a word meaning to confuse.

4d           Primate‘s capital broadcast (5)
LEMUR:  This primate sounds like (broadcast) a South American capital city.

5d           See tiger roaming round northern plain (9)
SERENGETI: Anagram (roaming) of SEE TIGER placed around (round) an N(orthern).

6d           A great many besieging uranium plant (5)
LOTUS:  A word for a great many placed around (besieging) the chemical symbol for uranium.  Hears Jim Clark driving an F1 car of the same name.

7d           Typically old, part of church seen before storm (2,7)
ON AVERAGE:  O(ld) followed by a part of a church and finally a word meaning to storm.  Split that lot (2,7) to get a phrase meaning typically.

8d           Start completely determined (6)
OUTSET:  I don’t see why the first part of the answer means completely, you have to use it twice to mean that but the second half means determined or ready.

9d           Steal tin at church (6)
SNATCH:  The chemical symbol for tin followed by the AT from the clue and then the abbreviation of church.

15d        Actor from Maine beginning to learn on American guitar (3,6)
MEL GIBSON:  The abbreviation of Maine and an L (beginning to Learn) followed by (on in a down clue) an American brand of electric guitar.  Shame the actor isn’t actually from Maine.

16d        Without any complications in Naples and at sea (2,7)
AS PLANNED:  Anagram (at sea) of NAPLES AND.

17d        Last drink, so here’s to you! (7,2)
BOTTOMS UP:  A word for the last one in a pile of something followed by a word meaning to drink.  This one takes me back . . .

18d        To eat out is an easy thing to do (6)
PICNIC:  Double definition.

20d        Band in street on right (6)
STRIPE:  The abbreviation of street and a word which can mean right or ready.

22d        Blunder made by troublesome child forgetting time (5)
ERROR:  A word for an unruly child without the T (forgetting T(ime)).

23d        Explicit about writer of nonsense verse (5)
CLEAR:  A single letter meaning about followed by a writer of nonsense poetry including The Owl and the Pussycat.

24d        Nerve of supporters on top of stand (5)
BRASS:  Some supporters of a lady’s chest followed by an S (top of Stand).

My podium today is 10a, 14a and 15d with 10a on the top step.

Quick crossword puns:

Top line:        MISS     +     QUEUED     =     MISCUED

Bottom line:    SINGER     +     POUR     =     SINGAPORE

The grid looks like there might be a third pun across the middle but it there is I can’t work it out.

59 comments on “DT 30300
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  1. Slightly on the tough side, I thought but not as much as the last few Mondays. For some reason I could not get “string” out of my mind for 20d and this held me up for a while. I wonder how many know the guitar but I suppose it is quite a well known brand. I thought 2d was rather clever and this is my COTD.

    Many thanks to Campbell for the challenge and pommers for the hints.

    1. There is a picture of one that you will have seen very often as our regular contributor Taylor Gibson uses it as his avatar.

  2. A very pleasant start to the crosswording week – thanks to Campbell and pommers.
    I didn’t know the 15d guitar but it couldn’t be anything else.
    My ticks went to 17a, 27a, 3d and 17d.
    I think the first bit of 8d means completely as in ‘he was tired ***’.

  3. I agree with SteveCowling on the guitar and the string.
    2d is a very good clue and I liked quite a few others including 18a and 19a.
    I’m getting a bit tired of the blunder and troublesome child combo .
    Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  4. I thought this light, enjoyable and good fun throughout.
    23a made me laugh though in all my time in Australia I don’t think I heard anyone address anyone else as such!
    My top three are 27a plus 7&17d.
    Many thanks to Campbell and Pommers for the entertainment.

    1. I too was puzzled by 8d but the synonym is given in the BRB as definition 34 (!) for “out”. However I’m not sure how you would use it in practice.

    2. Having done some digging around, I’ll try to throw some light on it.

      Online it says the following….

      ”Sense of “to a full end, completely, to a conclusion or finish” is from c. 1300. Meaning “so as to be no longer burning or alight.”

      So ‘the lights are out’ means the lights have come to an end or are complete for the day. But, I can’t see how to use the adverb.

      Good, light fun as is to be expected on a Monday. Even though 11a gave it a run for its money,18a getting my vote for COTD as it’s a new one on me that I will try to use as a Scrabble word because it will score nicely.

      Thank you to Campbell and Pommers.


  5. Today was a classic example of needing the right mindset. I decided it would be tricky, as previous Mondays have been recently, so on first pass managed a measly single clue. Having given myself a stiff talking to I had another try and found it was not as hard as recent weeks. There were some tricky misdirections and I also kept getting string in my brain for 20d and rapidly realised the error of my ways in trying to make 3d an anagram! 23a make me chuckle so will be my favourite. I also was not sure about the parsing of 8d.

    Many thanks to our setter and to Pommers for the explanations

    Off to garden now, it is sunny but very windy here in the Chilterns.

  6. Definitely not a wholly straightforward puzzle, this one took me a long time to break into. However, it was quite an enjoyable challenge with some clever clues. I liked the 5d anagram and the cleverly structured lego clues, 7d and 16d but my COTD is the 4d homophone and geographical clue. I guess that those who dislike the involvement of General Knowledge in a puzzle might not be so keen on this one but it was all easy to find. Thanks to the compiler (was it Canpbell?) And to Pommers for the hints.

  7. We seem to be back to ‘normal’ for a Monday after the last couple of weeks. Just enough head scratching to make the whole thing very enjoyable. I like Gazza’s explanation for 8d which I did give a hmm to. My podium could be very full today but I will restrict it to 18a, 21a, 2d, 3d ( not cricket this time!) and my ONE favourite 9d. Thanks to Campbell for the lower quickie pun and Pommers for helping me to parse 20d.

  8. Solved from 1a
    Put 15a on hold
    And continued to 28a.
    Returned to 15a , eventually solved.
    Smiles at 14 and 19a and 17d.
    The clever 2 and 3d joint CsOTD.
    Many thanks Campbell and pommers.

  9. It’s Monday :good: It’s Campbell :good: but I think I unnecessarily made ‘heavy weather’ of this and it took some time to ‘get going’ with the first third, or thereabouts, taking as long as the second two thirds – 2.5*/3.5*

    Candidates for favourite – 14a, 18a, 26a, 2d, and 9d – and the winner is 9d.

    Thanks to Campbell and pommers.

  10. Quick to solve whilst Mama Bee was at the dentist, (Costa coffee, slice of tiffin and OJ )I had a bit of trouble with the Band too but got there in the end. Thanks to Pommers and Campbell

  11. Gentle fun. I liked 10a and 9d. My take on 8d is that if you put all, flat, worn, etc before out then out implies completely. Thanks to pommers and today’s setter.

  12. Tougher than the usual Monday fare methinks at **/*** but the 5 anagrams helped. For some reason I found it easier to solve from the S to the N having drawn a bit of a blank with my first few N readings. Thought 7d COTD. Thanks pommers and our setter.

  13. I only managed a few at first read through but gradually got on the right wavelength. After a lovely warm afternoon yesterday back to perishing cold again today. Didn’t see the capital city in 4d, maybe I pronounce it wrong. Hadn’t heard of the guitar either so was a bung in. Thanks to all

  14. 1.5*/4*. A nice light fun start to the crosswording week with 15d my favourite.

    Many thanks to Campbell and to pommers.

  15. Took a bit of convincing where 8d’s ‘completely’ and 20d’s ‘right’ were concerned but a smooth ride elsewhere.
    Podium places went to 14,17&26a plus 3&24d.

    Thanks to Campbell and to pommers for the review – your music clip was a complete unknown to me, must have passed me by, but I was glad to see that I wasn’t alone in trying to sort out a middle row pun!

  16. Excellent crossword with just the right balance (for me, and I stress for me – ™Senf) of bung-em-ins and heuristic brain noodling.

    With H still unable to walk far (broken toe) we have abandoned bluebell-watch for this year, so yesterday afternoon we spent a smashing couple of hours sitting outside at the Runnymede Hotel, watching the boats meander past, playing cards, and chatting. Then a delightful surprise as The Youngster decided to join us, choosing the bewildering combination of soup and pineapple juice (not in the same container; soup in bowl, juice in glass). We were accompanied by the gentle buzz and hum of the M25 in the distance, which still sounded better than the winner of the previous night’s Eurovision Song Contest.

    Thanks to Campbell, and pommers of the Vega Baja del Segura. A bonus ‘shout out’ to Dearest Daisy who makes me smile and/or think with her splendid contributions.

    1. I remember the predecessors of The Runnymede Hotel and the M25 – The Anglers and the Staines By-Pass!

  17. Very straightforward yet still most enjoyable with plenty of good clues and gentle humour, with 15d taking the honours this afternoon.

    My thanks to the double punner and pommers.

  18. Lovely easy start to crossword week, with just a couple of head scratching moments.


    Fav 24d LOI 27a.

    Thanks to setter and pommers.

  19. This was not a nice way to start off the non-work week for me. Found this to be a tough Campbell puzzle for me.
    Found some of the parsing unsolvable as well as 18a that I have never heard of.
    Did not like 11a or 15d as I don’t see the crypticness of them.

    2.5*/2* for this one for me today. Not Campbell at his best IMHO

    Favourites were tough too … 19a, 27a, 2d & 9d — with 9d the winner.

    Sorry … for me I did not like this one … an 18a puzzle.
    Not up to Campbells usual standards. Or so say I.

    Thanks nevertheless to Campbell and pommers for hints/blog.

  20. My usual Monday trouble!
    I really tried to put myself onto a different wavelength today – it didn’t help much – it’s obviously just that I find Campbell tricky!
    Not a hope in hell with 15d -a combination of an actor AND a guitar in the same clue – neither my speciality like mixing football and cricket!
    There were some clues I enjoyed very much – 10, 18, (so many in beautiful colours) 23 and 27a and 3, 4 and 18a.
    Having had an Australian grandfather I’ll make my favourite clue 23a – just the ONE . . .
    Thanks to Campbell for the crossword and to pommers for the hints.

  21. Probably just me but I found this the hardest Monday puzzle I can remember. Must be a Campbell whose puzzles I always find impenetrable.
    Absolutely no fun whatsoever

  22. Although I was slow to get going, I was relieved to find this much more user friendly than the recent spate of Monday offerings. Some GK required but nothing to make the brain hurt, but did need a few hints, thanks Pommers, especially 14a and 27a where I really needed some help. Thanks to Campbell for being kind to us today.

  23. I always find the Monday puzzles tough, and this was no exception despite a scattering of very straightforward clues to get started with……the SW corner held me longest together with the plant (which I had never heard of), but a very different and stimulating puzzle overall…

  24. By no means a walk in the park but satisfying with which to do battle and I did eventually make it. West held out longest. Couldn’t think past ‘digger’ for 23a. IMHO 4d is a bit far-fetched and I needed help with 16d. 24d supporters certainly are bad pennies! Thank you Campbell and pommers.

  25. I always find Campbell tricky and flocculent, though I did better with this than previous Mondays. It was the west that held me up, particularly the NW. I did finish in the end with ehelp to helped me to get going again. I made a mistake by putting Astrid for 27a for astride, but of course the clue didn’t say that. Thank goodness for the gimmes, I don’t think I would’ve finished otherwise. Fave was 2d, but maybe 4d needs an honourable mention.
    Thank you Campbell, and, natch, pommers for unravelling so much. I do hope Robert is doing well.

  26. Solved early doors without problem (though confirmed both 10&18a post completion) & first chance to comment as out all day. Much more Mondayish than of late & very enjoyable too but glad I didn’t have to hint 8d. Fav was 17d (hands up those who remember the chain of shops where I spent a bob or two) with ticks for 11&27a + 7&15d.
    Thanks to Campbell & Pommers – no prizes for guessing which of the 2 best pic Oscar winners illustrated I prefer.

  27. Good evening
    Started on the way into work at 12:00, just finished now as my break comes to an end; most of today’s answers have been entered within the last 20 minutes. On the way into work, when you’d think my brain was more alert, I couldn’t get started!
    Thanks to Campbell and Pommers

  28. Well I never! This Campbell composition seems to have the widest range Of difficulty ratings that I can recall seeing here – from being almost read and write to being largely impenetrable. I confess to be in the former camp for once. Just held up by 20d which I had bunged in but still can’t for the life of me see how ripe means right.

    Thanks setter and pommers

      1. The banana I had was still green. Just right for me. If it had been ripe it would have been all wrong!

        Just saying…

  29. Nothing to do with the puzzle.
    I had to visit my GP this afternoon about my blood pressure and a growth on my face. The blood pressure is fine and just needs a tweak of the medication. The growth is a cancer and I have been given an express referral to the oncology unit. I’m not unduly worried because it is a suspect basal cell carcinoma, which is treatable.
    Just wanted to let you guys know in case I don’t appear for a while.
    It is, of course, nothing to what some of our group are going through.

      1. Thanks, Huntsman, As I said, not unduly worried at the moment. Basal cell carcinomas don’t tend to spread and, once cut out, all that is left is a scar.
        I hope! 😀

    1. Oh no! Steve. I hope all goes well and they can take care of it in-office. Thank goodness they suspect only basal cell. Let us know when you can.

      1. Thanks, Merusa. I will but I’m not worried at the moment. When I had my liver transplant my consultant told me I would be prone to cancer because of the immunosuppressant drugs so this comes as no surprise. I’m just relieved it is a cancer that is treatable

    2. All the very best to you Steve. Let’s hope it is non-spreading, as you say. I had one about ten years ago and to date, no reappearance. I hope it is the same for you.

    3. As you can see Steve- it is very late at night (long story, bad day only just looking at guzzle ) but reading through the comments I must say to you don’t despair. George has had four major cancers removed from the top of his head over the last eight years and the top of his head has a great dip in it where they went into the bone as deep as they could. It scares the life out of waiters when he is sitting down! But he is still here and still smiling and the treatment for these skin cancers is amazing. I’m rooting for you and I have a direct line to God, he is on my speed dial. I am sure you will be in good hands. Pity you are not under Addenbrookes care you would have the delightful Mr. Patel. I hope I am not too late at night for you to pick this up. Nil desperandum etc.

  30. It took me two sittings to get to grips with this today.

    As 8d was a mystery I needed the answer for 10a. Heard of the sisters but couldn’t name any of them. Also needed the hint for 18a, a plant I have never heard of.

    Thanks to all.

  31. For once I’m not going to complain, difficult but doable. Obviously not heard of 18a, who has? Favourite was 15d, well it had to be didn’t it. Thanks to Campbell for the mention and Pommers.

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