DT 30488 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30488

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30488

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment ****

Kia ora from Aotearoa.
As this will be our last blog before Christmas we would like to wish everyone all the best for the festive season which we know many of you, like us, will be spending with family and friends.
In the meantime we have this enjoyable Wednesday puzzle to amuse us.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


8a     Admirable, urgent reforms for area where transport is missing (7,8)

9a     Desperate chap in comic, unfinished Hamlet, say (3)
DAN : Hamlet’s nationality without the last letter.

10a     Accept capture where chess is played (4,2,5)
TAKE ON BOARD : Another word for capture and then a 2,5 phrase for where chess is played.

11a     Overturned lush plant again (5)
REPOT : The reversal of a lush or heavy drinker.

12a     Television presenter with no charm — an eccentric (9)
ANCHORMAN : An anagram (eccentric) of NO CHARM AN.

15a     Little kiss welcomes a business man who’s vain (7)
PEACOCK : A word for a little kiss that has avian connotations contains ‘A’ from the clue and a two letter ‘business’.

17a     Following Guinness, almost drunk (7)
ENSUING : An anagram (drunk) of GUINNES(s) with the final letter missing.

19a     Revolutionary London theatre starts to go places (5-4)
GLOBE-TROT : Firstly (starts) the famous reconstructed London theatre and then the shortened name of a Russian revolutionary.

20a     Some sports editor returning, namely from Rome (2,3)
ID EST : A reverse lurker, hiding in the clue.

21a     Arranged break with setter and great solver here? (5,6)
BAKER STREET : An anagram (arranged) of BREAK and SETTER.

24a     Musician’s wife is running over (3)
ONO : A two letter word for ‘is running’ or ‘in operation’ plus O(ver).

25a     Declaration about leave in US government agency (5,10)
STATE DEPARTMENT : A formal declaration contains leave or go away.


1d     Aged relative catches current number one’s played in concert (5,5)
GRAND PIANO : A familiar name for an older male relative contains the physics symbol for current. Finally, the two letter abbreviation for number.

2d     Egyptian ruler getting cloned? I disapprove! (3-3)
TUT-TUT : The shortened name for the well-known mummified pharaoh gets repeated.

3d     Wolves defended by supporter, one with a big bag (10)
BACKPACKER : The name for a group of wolves is contained by a supporter or sponsor.

4d     Exuberance in British carnival location (4)
BRIO : B(ritish) and a South American carnival location.

5d     Saw OK lob shot works in court, perhaps (3-5)
LAW-BOOKS : An anagram (shot) of SAW OK LOB.

6d     Outlines of amazing rotunda in Asian tourist destination (4)
AGRA : The first and last letters (outlines) of two words in the clue.

7d     King Edward periodically doesn’t flush (6)
REDDEN : The letter from Latin that signifies king, then the abbreviation for Edward and the first, third and fifth letters of doesn’t.

8d     Shaking, Brad Pitt detailed hallucinogenic nightmare (3,4)
BAD TRIP : An anagram (shaking) of BRAD PIT(t) with his final letter removed.

13d     Gossip is something Jack Sprat refused to do (4,3,3)
CHEW THE FAT : The wordplay alludes to the part of the Sunday roast that Jack Sprat rejected.

14d     Workers, receiving help, finished six successful deliveries (6,4)
MAIDEN OVER : Male workers enclose a synonym for help, then finished or completed.

16d     Like certain bandits I prepared to fight (3-5)
ONE-ARMED : The Roman numeral I written in English, and prepared to fight or having weapons.

18d     Take a hike in America? With no map, you might! (3,4)
GET LOST : The possible fate for a mapless traveller.

19d     Lose one’s shirt, ultimately bearing torso and chest (2,4)
GO BUST : The last letters (ultimately) of bearing and torso, then another word for chest.

20d     Completely fashionable pet travelling to Oz (2,4)
IN TOTO : Fashionable or trendy and the pet who travelled with Dorothy.

22d     Using part of sketchbook, handled ruler (4)
KHAN : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

23d     Tense, on edge? Not us! (4)
THEM : The abbreviation for tense and then edge or seam.

Lots of ticks on our pages but we could not decide on any one for favourite.

Quickie pun    teller    +    Graf    +    poll    =    telegraph pole

74 comments on “DT 30488
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  1. Very doable, very entertaining, fun from start to finish. Can’t quite see how 19a works so will have to see the hints today. Off to rake up last of the leaves now so will just vote for my two favourites, 8a and the lovely 20d.

  2. Another most enjoyable crossword with just the right level of difficulty for me. Lots of excellent cluing needing a bit of diverse General Knowledge and schoolboy Latin.I even managed the cricket related answer without too much trouble.

    Lots of favourites but top ones are 8a, 21a, 16d and 20d.

    Our bright, sunny weather in NE Scotland has disappeared to be replaced by continuous drizzle.

    Thnaks to the setter for the entertainment and the 2Kiwis.

  3. Well, that was different.

    With over half of the answers being multi-worded, I’m looking forward to people’s thoughts. Some will love it, others will hate it. I’m somewhere in the middle. Maybe, if it was slightly harder, I would have enjoyed the challenge a bit more.

    Most of the clues were well-constructed and there were some nice surfaces.

    My podium is 19a, 8d and 16d.

    Many thanks to the setter and Le Touquet.


    1. Have I been asleep for a while? What is the phobia about multi-word answers all about?

      They just add to the fun of the challenge as far as I am concerned.

      The place for single word answers, and single word clues in some cases, is in the Quickie!

      1. My problem with multi-word answers is that, until you get them, you are denied quite a few checking letters. Strangely, I did not have a problem with today’s ones – perhaps the answers came to me more quickly than usual.

      2. I’m okay with them but I know a few of the solvers aren’t a fan though I’m not sure why.

        I think 16 out of 30 is a tad OTT for my liking. Half a dozen will do me nicely.

      3. I agree. We have to take it all as it comes, one day Tom is happy, the next day Dick is happy -as for Harry, least said, soonest mended!

  4. For me, very friendly today and hugely enjoyable. It took me a long time to parse 1d as I couldn’t get beyond ‘gran’ for the aged relative and I failed completely to parse 19a. Having looked at the hints I’m not sure I would have got there had I continued to persevere.Unusually for me my favourite is the anagram at 21a with podium places for 14d and 20d. Thanks to the setter and the 2 Kiwis.

  5. 1.5*/4*. This was light and fun with 19a, 8d & 20d making up my podium selection.

    Many thanks to the setter and to the 2Ks.

  6. I really enjoyed this one and managed to finish unaided. Lots of clues that I liked and a smattering of anagrams, some of which took a while to crack. My favourite 8a.

    Many thanks to the setter and to the 2 kiwis for all the hints throughout the year, I hope you have a happy time with your family and friends.

  7. My heart sank at seeing the multi word answers but in the event not too bad.
    I got stuck with 24a or would have had a fast finish. Penny ( lane) finally dropped.
    Quite good fun and favourite was 8a for being big and bold.
    Thanks to compiler.

  8. Lots of fun here for me. Like others I struggled with parsing 19a, I got caught up with the second word trying to use a T and somehow link go (possibly off) with the rot part – even hitting this with my customary hammer did not let me leave it in peace so many thanks to the 2 kiwis for illumination.
    17A was a great clue I thought and favourites were 21A and 13 & 16D.
    thanks again to the 2Ks and to the setter for the fun.

  9. Spot on for me today,excellen cluing really enjoyed the solve.
    Favourites 11a 21a 19a, like others last in was 24a,parsed after much head scratching.
    Thanks to all **/****

  10. Excellent crossword; enjoyed it immensely.

    My blood pressure is returning to normal after the game at Stamford Bridge last night. Losing 1-0 with seconds to go; equalised; won the tie on a penalty shoot-out. Exhausting.

    Thnaks to the setter for a smashing crossword, and, of course, The TwoKays – Merry Christmas to both of you.

  11. That was a lot of fun. North came in ahead of South. So many good clue surfaces from which I particularly liked 21a, 1d and 2d. I stupidly needed hint to parse/solve 7d. 8d is new one on me. 🎄 Thank you Mysteryone and MrK to whom very best wishes for a Happy Christmas and thank you both for your ongoing cruciverbal hinting. 🎄

  12. Apart from a couple of clues that didn’t work well for me, this was an enjoyable and relatively straightforward solve. 16d in its various guises always raises a smile and my stand-out favourite was 19a.

    Thanks to our setter (Robyn?) and to our 2Ks for another excellent review – very best of festive wishes to you and yours and many thanks for all your hard work on the blog this year.

  13. An enjoyable mid-week challenge – 2.5*/3.5*

    A slight eyebrow raise at 7d King Edward.

    Candidates for favourite – 15a, 13d, and 23d – and the winner is 13d.

    Thanks to whomsoever and thanks and Hari Kirihimete to the 2 Kiwis.

  14. Nothing wrong with multi-word clues here, and as Barry Manilow almost said
    “You’ve got to look at it from my angle”
    Thanks and a Merry Christmas to setter and 2K’s
    Boring day here waiting for instructions to go back up for recounts,
    If Daisy popsin tell her she gets a name check in the toughie

      1. 24 aisles 17 deep and 12 high, each pair gets a scissor lift and 2 aisles to count it is easier to move people up than bring the “industrial fasteners” (screws of all shapes and sizes) down. The most boring bit is waiting for the bean counters to approve what we counted yesterday. At full stretch those scissor lifts are wobbly!

    1. I’ve just got into bed and picked up the toughie. I hope you were not referring to 1a – little old lady with wit and energy! I’ll have your guts for garters, young man. Cheeky monkey.

  15. Grand fun. Many smiles along the way, with the only real delay being 19a, but once the penny did drop, gets my cotd closely followed by 11a and 24a. Thanks to compiler and the two K’s.

  16. Good fun, perfect for killing some time in a very quiet office today.
    Like others I couldn’t parse 19a, but that was my only blip.
    I quite enjoy a multi-word answer so no complaints from me on that one. Lots to like but no stand out favourite.
    Thanks to all.

  17. I also like multi words clues, it adds to the variety. My last one in was 11a, so my favourite today. Thanks and Merry Christmas to the 2K’s and setter.

  18. I like multi words answers but each to their own.

    A good fun crossword today .
    Favourite 20d .
    Needed to look at the hints for the parsing of 19a .
    Merry Christmas to the 2 Kiwis.

    At last we have sunshine today here. (A good bit further south than DaveP). Not too cold either but who knows what tomorrow may bring.

  19. A very enjoyable puzzle for this Wednesday with some outstanding clues, I thought. Many of them made groan/smile/chuckle with a couple I had a head scratching moment or two … and to answer Senf’s question, I have absolutely no problem or phobia about multi word answers. I love ’em! Today’s were great!

    1.5*/4* today

    Favourites include 10a, 21a, 8d, 13d, 16d & 18d — with winner 21a … that was a brilliant clue!
    Clues that made me smile/groan include 24a, 7d, 8d, 13d & 18d

    Thanks to setter & the 2K’s for hints/blog

  20. I thought this was a brilliant puzzle with many excellent clues, though as ever my preferred picks rarely coincide with those of others. Many thanks to today’s setter and hinters, as well as all the others that have kept us entertained over the year.

  21. What A Whopper of a Wednesday Workout. I did enjoy it. I always go down the across clues and the first sent me off into rural areas and Dr Beeching territory, drew the magic circle of letters and out popped the answer and so it went on. I loved 11,12, 19,20 & 21a and 20d. I even got the crickety one. I’m going to plump for 21a as favourite – great clue. Happy Christmas to the 2 Ks and to the Setter of course. Does the quickie pun go into three words by the way? It could do.

    1. I’m glad you said ‘mea culpa’ not ‘my bad’ which I hate with a passion.

      My bad what?

      I think people find it too hard to say ‘My mistake/error/fault’.

          1. David’s son stayed with us recently and appeared t breakfast. I asked how he was and he replied ‘I’m good’. I told him on no circumstances to say that to his Dad. Then the imp in me said ‘no, say it and see what happens’. WOW! Fireworks and only 8 am. Love the result but also hate the expression. Hate all these BBC presenters who leave the g off runnin, jumpin, flyin etc.

  22. Lovely crossword for a Wednesday, plenty of double words and clever answers 😃 **/**** Favourites: 8a, 5d & 22d 🤗 Thanks to the 2 x Ks and to the Setter hope the sun shines for you at Christmas, and don’t forget the sun screen 🥂

  23. Quite enjoyed for a Wednesday, and only got stuck on a few. Didn’t appreciate the 1a reminder that we are flying through that in May for a holiday on the island 🤫. Thanks to setter and 2Kiwis. Good news on daughter, as of Friday she will allowed to hold her head up for 4/6 hours a day for 7 days, so she will be able to enjoy our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day family get together. So happy for her.
    After an unusually wet and windy December so far, we are now being chilled by a cold snap. Not what we look forward to as we suffer through the summer months. Hopefully getting warmer soon.

  24. Morning all.
    We did wonder whether the number of multi-word answers would attract some comments and it looks like they have.
    The picture for 6d was one that we dragged out of our files. It was taken a few years ago when we were celebrating our golden wedding anniversary there.

  25. I enjoyed this very much, though I needed hints to know why, eg 19a, isn’t that clever? I like multi word answers, suits me very nicely thank you. I liked lots, last in was 24a, I nearly gave up on that when I had my epiphany. I liked 21a, great solver indeed. Fave may be 13d but I could change my mind. Like BusyLizzie, we’re cold here and I’ve had to put on a cardigan. I’m not cut out for this, I need to move where it’s warm.
    Thank you setter for the fun, and 2Kiwis for providing the “why” for a few. Merry Christmas to you both.

  26. Original clues here and there made this a *** for me, including musician’s wife and Dorothy’s pet! Thank you setter and 2 Ks for explaining

  27. Had to check the chess champion and the plant in this otherwise quite straightforward puzzle.
    Liked the exposed social.
    Thanks to the setter and to 2ks for the review.
    Nice to see colin and carol in front of the Taj Mahal. Have a great Xmas.

  28. What a delight. Finished unaided but without 24a. Asked hubby and he had the answer straight away. Now this is a man who does not do the crossword. Answer graciously received. Ticked so many but the solver in 21 a was excellent as was the desperate chap. Honourable mention to 20 d but must stop because I could go on adding. Thanks to 2 Kiwis and the setter. More of the same please.

  29. Good evening

    On my way home, no more work until next Wednesday; the iron road will have to cope without me!
    Pen back in pocket; all done – yet I don’t understand how it took me so bloomin long to figure out today’s last to fall: 5d! You would have thought that it was fairly simple, wouldn’t you?

    20a and 16d are joint COTD. My thanks to our compiler for the braincell work-out, and to 2Ks for the hints.

  30. Solved early doors but have been out all day starting with the joys of a venesection at the Royal Free Hospital where the delightful Cynthia, who is my regular phlebotomist, is as expert as they come thankfully. Loved the guzzle & wouldn’t be in the least surprised if it’s Robyn doing double duty though he hasn’t been popping in of late to confirm. Ticks galore but if forced to narrow it down to a podium it’d be 16d with 19&21a.
    Thanks to the setter & to the 2Ks for all of their great reviews throughout the year.
    Ps What a shame the Toughie seems to have attracted so few comments as it’s really top notch & not overly difficult either.

  31. Enjoyable crossword with 10 and 11a my favourites. Thanks and a happy Christmas and peaceful New Year to the 2Ks and the setter.

  32. Late on parade again! I found today’s offering a wonderful teaser that gave enjoyment aplenty. Mind you, I have never liked the phrase at 10a. Reminds me too much of “office speak” such as “let’s touch base, see what works and put the rest in the car park”. Ghastly! 24a took me an age because I could not see the obvious. I really must stop thinking clues are too impossible to solve. My COTD is the chap in the deerstalker with the meerschaum at 21a.

    Grateful thanks to the setter for a great two coffee challenge. Thank you, 2Ks for the hints and may I wish you both a very Merry Christmas along with thanks for all the work you do for us.

    PS Great to see the guzzle on the back page instead of adverts for expensive perfumes! Makes folding the paper much easier. 👍

  33. This unexpectedly turned into a bit of a marathon after doing about half of the toughie then the usual Wednesday quiz I inadvertently solved Saturdays crossword, which I hadn’t had time to look at, then had to solve this! My brain by now was starting to slow down. Anyway I got there. Favourite was 10a. Thanks to the setter and 2K’s. The rest of the toughie might have to wait until tomorrow.

  34. Another very enjoyable crossword. As many others I took an age to parse 24a, otherwise too many could be my favourite, in fact all of them.

    Many thanks to the setter and to the 2Ks for the hints (keep them coming please). May you all have a wonderful Christmas.

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