Author Archives: Gazza

Toughie 1877

Toughie No 1877 by Micawber

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Micawber’s in a pretty gentle mood today but his puzzles are always enjoyable.

Please leave a comment telling us how you fared and what you thought of it.… Read More

Toughie 1873

Toughie No 1873 by Stick Insect

Hints and tips by Gazza

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

We don’t often get new Toughie setters (about one a year on average, I reckon) so a warm welcome to Stick Insect. My investigoogling has turned up little information about our new setter other than that he/she is a compiler for the Listener crossword.… Read More

Toughie 1869

Toughie No 1869 by Messinae

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

Thanks to Messinae for a pleasant puzzle with a mini-theme. We could perhaps have done with a bit more variety in the types of clue since nearly half of them involved a container/insertion type construct.… Read More

Toughie 1865

Toughie No 1865 by Petitjean

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

We continue to be entertained by puzzles from the late John Pidgeon over a year after his untimely death. I thought that this was one of his gentler ones but as enjoyable as ever.… Read More

Toughie 1863

Toughie No 1863 by proXimal

Hints and tips by Gazza

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

Dutch is on his hols for a month so you’re going to be getting some guest bloggers in this spot starting with yours truly.

I thought that this was less tricky than what we usually get from a Friday proXimal but I was held up more than I should have been in the NW quadrant which accounts for the extra half-star I’ve given it for difficulty.… Read More

Toughie 1861

Toughie No 1861 by Firefly

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment **

Thanks to Firefly for a puzzle which was fairly straightforward though I can’t honestly say that I enjoyed it a great deal since it didn’t seem to have much in the way of sparkle.… Read More

Toughie 1857

Toughie No 1857 by Elkamere

Hints and tips by Gazza

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

I made rather heavy weather of this though when I’d finished I couldn’t really see why because there were a handful of ‘old favourites’ to give a way in.… Read More

Toughie 1853

Toughie No 1853 by Osmosis

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

When you see Osmosis’s name on a Toughie you know you’re going to get a lot of detailed wordplay and that’s what we’ve got. There are no complaints from me on that score though some of the constructs are repeated quite a lot (e.g.… Read More

Toughie 1849

Toughie No 1849 by Petitjean

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ****

Petitjean continues to entertain us with no hint that the store of puzzles he left for us is coming to an end – long may they continue. There are a couple of sporting references which may cause problems for some but I found this one fairly gentle.… Read More

Toughie 1845

Toughie No 1845 by Firefly

Hints and tips by Gazza

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

I have to say that I wasn’t overly enamoured with this one when I solved it – the four peripheral answers all went in very quickly and there are a lot of anagrams of various types (none very tricky), so the whole thing was over without any significant hold-ups.… Read More