DT 30415 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 30415

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30,415
Hints and tips by Huntsman

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **  –  Enjoyment ***

Many apologies for the extremely late posting. Technical issues – otherwise known as this muppet pressed heaven knows what and lost the whole shebang necessitating a complete rewrite. Hey ho. Let’s hope the hints that follow with the wait


In the following hints, definitions are underlined, indicators are mostly in parentheses, and answers are revealed by clicking where shown as usual. Please leave a comment below on how you got on with the puzzle.


1a RAF accepts high flier (10)

6a Boycott almost comfortable, then bowled (4)
SNUB: a synonym for comfortable less the final letter (nearly) plus the single letter for bowled (cricket)

10a Variety show always returns around middle of January (5)
REVUE: insert (around) the middle of January into a reversal (returns) of another word for always

11a Naval soldier eating fish spread (9)
MARGARINE: insert a ray-finned fish into a naval soldier

12a Popular position, for example (8)
INSTANCE: a two letter term for popular + a synonym for position

13a Wield no power in authority (5)
EXERT: remove the single letter for power from a word meaning authority or specialist

15a Runs programmes of study (7)
COURSES: a double definition- think blood running through veins for the former

17a Particular place is redeveloped (7)
SPECIAL: an anagram of PLACE IS

19a Incompetent tennis player in America(7)
USELESS: place a nine time major winner pictured below inside the usual two letter abbreviation for America

21a Old man does up royal residences (7)
PALACES: an old fashioned term for father followed by a word for does up ( think footwear)

22a Trained help bandages this writer (5)
AIMED: a synonym for help placed around (bandages) how this writer may refer to himself or herself

24a Dancing naked, we will keep adult aroused (8)
AWAKENED: an anagram (dancing) of NAKED WE + (will keep) the single letter for Adult

27a Former lover stretched tight with four tucked in blanket (9)
EXTENSIVE: the usual term for former lover followed by a word for stretched tight into which you insert (tucked in) the Roman numeral for four

28a Liking flavour (5)
TASTE: a double definition

29a Squawk from chicken – expression of pain getting sacrificed (4)
YELL: delete an onomatopoeic word for an expression of pain from a word for chicken or cowardly. A neat surface.

30a Response from unhappy customer perhaps shows spirit (3-2-3-2)
GET UP AND GO: a cryptic definition for spirit or energy

1d Painful? Very concerning (4)
SORE: a word for very + the usual preposition for concerning

2d Coming on certain topless romp (9)
ADVENTURE: a synonym for coming or arrival + one for certain without the first letter (topless)

3d Uniform on time for competition (5)
EVENT: another word for uniform + the single letter for Time

4d Prompts matinee idol initially in tears (7)
REMINDS: place the first letters (initially) of Matinee Idol into a synonym of tears or rips

5d Medical tool might push oddly (7)
FORCEPS: a synonym of might or power & the alternate (oddly) letters of PuSh


7d Racket I found in trunk (5)
NOISE: insert (found in) the I from the wordplay into another word for the body part

8d Braless and the kinky pants indicate being this? (10)
BREATHLESS: an anagram (kinky) of BRALESS & THE

9d Food quite possibly getting cheers (8)
FAREWELL: a word for a range of food plus a synonym for quite ( not the first that sprang to my mind) giving you a definition I’d more readily associate with a toast or an expression of gratitude

14d A clue Tracy cracked without error (10)
ACCURATELY: an anagram (cracked) of A CLUE TRACY

16d Removing spades, the man had gloomy yard scrubbed (8)
SHEDDING: link the single letter for Spades (card suit) with the contraction for the man had then append a synonym for gloomy less (scrubbed) the final letter represented by Yard

18d Grew hot and stopped crossing river (9)
INCREASED: an informal term for hot (featured at 12a) + a word for stopped into which you insert (crossing) the single letter for River

20d Briefly spot a small swimmer here? (7)
SEASIDE: think this is an all in one clue. Link a truncated (briefly) word for spot or discern, the A in the clue+ the single letter for Small & finish with another appearance for that freshwater fish otherwise known as an orfe.

21d Dish on gold table (7)
PLATEAU: a type of dish or crockery item + the symbol for gold


23d Tame mongrel with large lead? (5)
METAL: an anagram (mongrel) of TAME + the single letter for Large

25d Additional old craft capsized (5)
EXTRA: the usual two letter preposition for old + a reversal (capsized) of a word for craft or skill

26d Some profane Roman (4)

NERO: a lurker to finish – the expression had him fiddling while Rome burned. Here’s a pic of the great Peter Ustinov playing him in QuonVadis

Top 3 for me in no particular order were 29a plus 8&20d. Which ones hit the spot for you?

Today’s Quick Crossword pun: CAN + TUB + HAIRY + TAILS = CANTERBURY TALES

56 comments on “DT 30415

  1. A few head-scratchers but overall awell constructed guzzle with a good variety of clue types and a bit of General Knowledge. My COTD is the four letter 26d a fine lirker with agreat ssurface read, almost an all in one clue. 19a, the lego clue with great use of GK was also good as was the complicated lego clue at 16d. Thanks to Huntsman for the hints and bad luck on losing all your hard work thanks to to our Tuesday compiler.

  2. Sorry to hear of your woes Huntsman. Not wishing to add to them but there are four clues in the quick crossword pun.

  3. Got there on my Jack Jones but will read hints in due course🤞. South came through first. No real hold-ups but limited amusement. Thank you MrP (?) and Huntsman to whom good luck with sorting your wrinkle.

    1. D’oh have just looked above and see hints have in fact come through – so glad Huntsman and thanks for your efforts on our behalf ⭐️.

  4. Took a bit longer today, as I did it on a train, and you can’t concentrate like you could sitting at home with the cats. No real hold-ups except for 9d, which I guessed at and got right, but really, this clue was the spot that spoilt a beautiful thing. Great fun apart from that, thought 19a was very clever, and liked the misdirection in 23d.

  5. Loved this crossword. Loads of clever misdirection and thought provoking clues. COTD 20d
    2*/5* for me.

  6. No need to apologise Huntsman. I am sure you are not the first and will not be last to have a ‘catastrophic’ event while preparing a blog and, remember, worse things happen at sea, apparently.

    Once again, based on the Quickie grid, Anthony Plumb would appear to be today’s setter. Typically Tuesdayish – **/****

    Candidates for favourite – 27a, 30a, 4d, 16d, and 18d – and the winner is 18d.

    Thanks to Mr Plumb, or whomsoever, and thanks to Huntsman.

  7. I really like this setter’s style, not difficult but clever, witty and with well concealed definitions.
    6a was clever with its reference to the stereotypical Yorkshireman, as was 19a. I also liked the &litish lurker at 26d but favourite has to be 8d.
    Many thanks to the setter and to a no-doubt flustered Huntsman, I know I was when I had similar problems!

  8. Just a quick comment to Huntsman – when I was a ‘hinty person” I lost the whole lot of everything and had to start from scratch more than once, I’m ashamed to say! I’m sure it’s possible to retrieve everything when it’s all disappeared but my IT skills aren’t up to that!!

    1. As a newbie to this blogging lark, I live in dread of that happening, as my IT skills are very limited! Thanks for your perseverance, Huntsman.
      An enjoyable puzzle. Just right for a Tuesday. 1a my COTD.
      Thank you setter and Huntsman.

  9. A fairly typical Tuesday puzzle – thanks to the setter and to Huntsman both for the hints and all the hard work involved in a total rewrite of his blog.
    The clues I liked best were 18d and 20d but my favourite was the Quickie pun.

  10. Light, enjoyable, witty. Special mentions to the smiles arising from 8d, 24a and 29a, with other laurels going to 27a, 16d & COTD 26a.

    1.5 / 3

    Many thanks to the setter and to Huntsman – commiserations, I feel your pain!

  11. Great guzzle.
    As a Chelsea supporter, I am used to catastrophic events and therefore I have full sympathy with El Huntsman.
    It is said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result, and it has felt very true as we attend Stamford Bridge for every game only to see our team lose 1-0 to Nottingham Forest, Aston Villa, and any other opposing team who tootles along for the gift of three points.

    Thanks to the setter and Andy On The First Tee.

    Today’s Crossword Soundtrack: Joni Mitchell Archives: The Asylum Years

  12. Typically Tuesday’ish? Not sure, but it was a little tricky in spots for me. No weird or strange words that can cause hair pulling though. Lots to like here.

    2*/3.5* for me

    Favourites include 1a, 24a, 30a, 7d & 21d — with winner 7d that caused me to groan and chuckle as the PDM happened. Great clue.
    Also thought 27a & 30a were great clues too. Frankly it is getting hard to come up with just one winner these days.

    Thanks to setter and Huntsman for blog/hints

  13. Had to concentrate on this one and 16d completely eluded me and I had to do a reveal, even after reading the hints. Some very good misdirection – I thought 7d was favourite until I solved 19a, which quickly usurped it. Manu thanks to the setter and the huntsman. Note to self – never again try to eat a very over- ripe melon – we have both been extremely unwell!

  14. Pretty straightforward but great fun nonetheless, with 6a my favourite. A nod, too, to the Quickie pun. My thanks to both the setter and Huntsman.

  15. Certainly a head scratcher for
    Many very brilliant
    Clues eg 13, 19,
    And 29a
    Some cunning misdirections in
    A good variety, got there unaided
    But only after two sessions.
    Thanks setter and Huntsman.

  16. A highly enjoyable offering from Mr Plumb today. At first, I thought it must be Thursday as the innuendo is at a level even RayT would find difficult to match (which greatly appealed to my schoolboy instincts). Thanks to him and to Huntsman for the review.

    Huntsman, sorry to hear you ran afoul of the blog devouring gremlins. I, too, have been their victim on occasion. I did eventually learn that WordPress maintains a draft copy of the post which should contain most of the lost material.

    As a couple of comments have alluded, 26d is an all-in-one clue (in fact, a true &lit.) where the entire clue is both wordplay and definition.

    Finally, for those who may have missed my late comment yesterday, let me say thank you for all the kind messages of congratulations I received on my blogging anniversary.

  17. I found this a bit like swimming in molasses, I got the answers but they were so hard to parse. Nevertheless, I got there with ehelp in the SE. There was some good stuff. The swimmer in 20d seems to be the fish du jour recently. I thought 8d was decidedly odd. I wonder what happened to the tennis player in 19a, such trauma. I liked 5d and 21a.
    Thank you setter, and Huntsman for helping with the explaining. I’ll now read the hints and comments.

    1. Yes, swimming in molasses about sums it up. Some helpful clues, but many that started to give me a headache, not much sparkle today IMHO. Also battled with Wordle today, so perhaps it is just me.

  18. I did feel for you this morning, Huntsman. As Kath said, there’s probably a way to get everything back but my woeful IT skills certainly wouldn’t be up to the challenge!
    Didn’t think today’s back-pager was as much fun as last Tuesday’s but it was still skilfully assembled. I can’t share our blogger’s enthusiasm for 29a simply because I hate the image it conjures up but I did rather like 19a and also the Quickie pun.

    Thanks to Campbell and to Huntsman for all his hard work.

    1. Oops – a friend just pointed out that I’d thanked the wrong compiler! Apologies and thanks to Mr Plumb.

  19. A very pleasant and enjoyable Tuesday offering with the single exception of 9d which took me an age and even then I had to check above, thanks to setter and Huntsman!!

        1. If you put a metaphorical comma between the definition and the tennis player it no longer implies that she is incompetent

  20. Huntsman, I immediately thought your ‘technical’ issues’ meant you were stuck in a bunker on the 5th! I enjoyed this and managed to finish OK. Have just had my Covid booster and flu jab and both arms now hurt like hell. Not sure which side I will be able to sleep on tonight. Anyway, thanks to the setter and Huntsman – I managed to ‘lose’ the entire application for an Alcohol Licence for the village Hall which had taken hours to do – never found it so had to start from scratch.

  21. What a difference a day makes, after yesterdays nightmare(for me at least). Managed this unaided but needed the hints to explain a couple, which then seemed blatantly obvious 🤷‍♂️. Thought 30a was very smooth and was pleased I remembered the tennis player in 19a, not being a fan of the game, all that looking left then right then left etc. Thanks to all.

  22. Forgot to mention I was very impressed by the word onomatopoeic in the hint for 29a, I must try and slip it into a conversation sometime 😂

    1. To me the best example of onomatopoeia is tintinnabulation! I hope the spelling is ok, iPad seems to think so.

  23. I really enjoyed this, for me a truly unaided finish. It’s a very rare occasion when I don’t even refer to a dictionary, employ electronic help or ( in desperation) seek the opinion of Mr Mhids. Lots of clever wordplay and misleading surface reads added to the pleasure. Favourite has to be 8d, the cheekiness of the clue leading, very cleverly, away from the actual answer. Podium places also for 2d and 16d, with special mention for the quickie pun. Thanks to our compiler, probably Mr Plumb, and Huntsman. I feel for you as I compile our church’s weekly news sheet and this has happened to me a few times – enough to make one weep!

  24. For once I solved in the morning of issue on the train. I thought it would be worth commenting as I’m usually a day late! Commiserations to Huntsman! I’ve now had an afternoon at Tate Modern. I enjoyed the puzzle. Last one in was 16d until I managed to parse it. Favourites 27 and 29a and 8 and 9d. Thanks Huntsman will now look at the hints and thanks Mr Plumb.

  25. What fun this was, I managed to finish before we went out and really enjoyed it. 8d was my favourite and I thought 23d clever. 9d was my last in and needed more thought.

    Many thanks to the setter and to Huntsman for battling the gremlins to provide the hints.

  26. I enjoyed today’s puzzle despite having to do it in two halves. Having said that I returned to filling in several clues one after the other. Moral of the story, go and do some chores, walk round the garden and do some dead-heading. I failed to get 16d without the hints and put ‘yelp’ for 29a! Thank you to Mr Plumb and Falcon. So sorry you had a stressful start to the day, Falcon.

  27. Enjoyed this except for 9d which caused a dnf. I have never heard of this used for cheers. I would be rather confused if someone did.

    Thanks to all.

    1. I agree with you Bananawarp re 9d but did in fact bung it in. It’s rather like the strange way in which cheers is sometimes used instead of thank you.

  28. The second half of 9d didn’t work for me at all but hey ho the rest was excellent with the Rayt’esk naughtiness of 8d being my favourite. Thanks to the setter and Huntsman, how fragile are the pile of electrons we rely on so much these days.

  29. 1.5*/4*. Late on parade after being out all day playing cricket finishing the season with a good win. This puzzle was light and fun; I really enjoyed it.

    Many thanks presumably to Mr Plumb and to Huntsman. Well done Huntsman on your persistence in the face of adversity.

  30. Good evening
    I’ve been away on holliers and spent two weeks Telegraph-less; consequently today, I was very rusty and today’s crozzie has taken me forever! I hope to be a bit quicker tomorrow.
    24a and the excellent 8d tie for COTD; many thanks to our compiler and to Huntsman.

  31. Even later for me….

    A very enjoyable puzzle with the exception of 20d that I doubt I would ever have solved.

    Thanks to the setter and to Huntsman.

  32. Too many distractions today meant I made a bit of a mare of it today Too many bung-ins and parsing later clues but that was probably my fault for trying to do too many things at once
    Reading the hints I see that it was all of my own doing as it all makes sense now thanks to Huntsman and Mr Plumb
    I dont wish to add to your problems Andy but he who fiddled while Rome burned isnt under his click here thingy

  33. It’s always encouraging to see that others have struggled with the same clues! Thanks to the setter, to all contributors and for the hints.

  34. Very late on parade because of Covid jabs.
    I found today’s guzzle a bit of a challenge. Is “high” in 1a really an anagram indicator?
    Thank you to the setter and to Huntsman for the hints. Let he who has never pressed the wrong button cast the first kilobyte.

Comments are closed.