DT 30464 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30464

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30464

Hints and tips by 2Kiwis

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

Kia ora from Aotearoa.
After rather indifferent weather for most of the past week, today is a beautiful fine clear day. We could do with plenty more of this as we move towards summer.
Our biggest problem with this puzzle was picking a favourite out of so many contenders.

Please leave a comment telling us how you got on.


1a     Guess how bus in Essex incorporates entertainment (4,8)
SHOW BUSINESS : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

9a     Shelter country’s leader during putsch (4,5)
TAKE COVER : A 4,4 phrase for a putsch includes the first letter of country.

10a     Article about a new title for Macbeth (5)
THANE : Definite article contains ‘A’ from the clue and N(ew).

11a     Sincere, perfect and altruistic person (6)
HONEST : A verb meaning perfect or polish and a two letter virtuous person.

12a     Fan of King Charles has fizzy wine and pork pie, right? (8)
CAVALIER : Sparkling wine from Spain, then what a pork pie is slang for, and R(ight).

13a     Russian car carrying detective’s superior (2-2-2)
LA-DI-DA : A well-known brand of Russian car contains a detective inspector.

15a     Swine gets a good deal, hosting a Scottish celebration (8)
HOGMANAY : A swine or pig, then a word for a lot contains ‘A’ from the clue.

18a     Sees red and steamy photo (8)
SNAPSHOT : Sees red or loses one’s temper, plus steamy or heated.

19a     Respect satisfies English revolutionary (6)
ESTEEM : Read from right to left, satisfies or is sufficient and E(nglish).

21a     Do its pages all have numbers? (8)
SONGBOOK : A cryptic definition. The numbers here are musical.

23a     Mean criminal admitting copper’s shrewdness (6)
ACUMEN : An anagram (criminal) of MEAN surrounds the chemical symbol for copper.

26a     The speaker’s fashion house (5)
MANOR : A homophone (the speaker’s) for a fashion or style.

27a     Shopkeeper, e.g. Victoria and her descendant Elizabeth (9)
STATIONER : What Victoria in London is an example of and then the late Queen’s regnal cypher.

28a     Road visited by patient setter travelling on bike (6,6)
HARLEY STREET : An expensive noisy brand of motorbike and an anagram (travelling) of SETTER.


1d     There may be books in this small, fancy chalet (7)
SATCHEL : The abbreviation for small and an anagram (fancy) of CHALET.

2d     Woody Allen OK losing £50, unexpectedly (5)
OAKEN : An anagram (unexpectedly) of A(ll)EN OK after the letter representing a pound and the Roman numeral for fifty have both been removed.

3d     Support team, heading for stadium seats (9)
BACKSIDES : Support or sponsor, then a sports team and the first letter of stadium.

4d     Spend less cash in bar (4)
SAVE : A double definition.

5d     Banks in Nebraska rather ambivalent over account provider (8)
NARRATOR : The first and last letters (banks) from four words in the clue.

6d     Amend half of Australian or Indian scripture (5)
SUTRA : An anagram (amend) of the first five letters of Australian.

7d     Brilliant quality of artist, one getting into an art (8)
RADIANCE : A royal academician, then an art such as ballet contains Roman numeral one.

8d     PA back in company before the deadline (6)
YEARLY : The final letter of company and then a word meaning before the deadline.

14d     Quaffing first drop of Drambuie, pour mixed gin (8)
DRAINING : The first letter of Drambuie, then pour as precipitation and an anagram (mixed) of GIN.

16d    Funny sitcom has a suffering fan? (9)
MASOCHIST : An anagram (funny) of SITCOM HAS.

17d     Massive deficit in fuel (8)
COLOSSAL : A solid fossil fuel contains deficit or shortfall.

18d     Spot drilled by American uncle, getting kind of oil (6)
SESAME : Spot or observe surrounds the archetypal American uncle.

20d     Live in pristine Middle-Eastern tower (7)
MINARET : Pristine or brand new surrounds live or exist.

22d     Create friction around mother country, formerly (5)
BURMA : Create friction or abrade gets reversed (around), then a familiar term for mother.

24d     Walk daintily through podium in celebration (5)
MINCE : A lurker, hiding in the clue.

25d     Blue vehicle reversing by yard (4)
NAVY : A motor vehicle reversed, then Y(ard).

Our last to parse was 5d so this gets our vote for favourite.

Quickie pun    chess    +    tough    +    draws    =    chest of drawers



127 comments on “DT 30464
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  1. I love any puzzle that can make me smile and this did it in spades.
    Tops for me was 13a followed by the super 28a and 16d and lol 24d.
    Many thanks to the setter and The Ks

  2. Wonderful puzzle with a mix of challenges! Favourites 13a and 16d.
    Great fun and raised my mood on a grey Witney day.
    Thanks to compiler.

  3. Very good puzzle today – really enjoyed it – I can’t use my app at work when I come in to the office (once a week!) as the network blocks it but when I went to the web site everything was colourful!

    I thought 5d very good – didn’t really get it at the start.

  4. The week progresses and so does the level of difficulty. All very fair except for perhaps 3d, which I thought was a bit of a bum clue. Having ridden some of the bikes mentioned in 28a, all I can say to anyone fancying one is image yourself astride a two-wheeled 1940s tractor, and you won’t go far wrong.
    Favourites for me were 13a and 27a. Thanks to our compiler today, super midweek fun.

      1. You raise an interesting point, SL.

        Is a compiler allowed to write a clue that has two legitimate answers?

          1. Gosh. I had never really thought about that and, looking at MG’s comment below, it seems like it’s a no-no.

      2. Yes, I reversed the wrong vehicle as well. An indication of how my mind works? 🤔
        A really enjoyable puzzle from 1a onwards. Thank you to the setter and the two Ks

    1. I got RACY and only realised it was wrong when completed. Couldn’t see anything in the clue to differentiate between this and the correct answer.

    2. Yes I got racy too, but the app told me it was wrong. It was a bit of a double bluff as my first thought was a colour then I thought of the other meaning. Lots of other good clues making a really good fun solve. Thanks to setter and 2 Kiwis.

    3. I went for the ‘correct’ colour answer but it is easy to see how the alternative can be arrived at with the ‘non-common’ letters not being checked.

      1. Those with long memories or our record keepers will remember that this self same clue appeared a few months sgo and caused the same consternation

        1. Spot-on, Mhids – almost exactly the same clue (“Blue vehicle turning round yard”) in a ProXimal puzzle on May 19th this year – 30,304.

        2. Except on that occasion it was the other letters that crossed, meaning that the down answers resolved which word it had to be, whereas today it could be either of them.

          That could be considered either better (the puzzle as a whole only has one plausible solution) or worse (if you unluckily pick the ‘wrong’ answer for the ambiguous clue, it messes up other answers).

        1. I had the correct answer only because I didn’t think of the alternative one and my newspaper would not have told me I was wrong if I had, poor clue.

  5. Very entertaining and a delight to solve – thanks to our setter and 2Ks.
    A few of the many clues that I liked were 1a, 13a, 5d, 8d and 16d.

    If you’re looking for more entertainment the Robyn Toughie today is superb and fairly gentle.

  6. I found some of these clues distinctly challenging, which pushed out my solving time: but what a delight. Great fun, penny drop moments and smiles galore. Very hard to pick a favourite from such a worthy selection, but 27a just gets the nod.

    My thanks to our Wednesday setter and the 2Ks.

  7. There were some godd lego clues in this puzzle, particularly 17d and 12a and my COTD, 8d, was a little masterpiece of clever wordplay. However there were a lot of quite impenetrable clues too and I was only able to finish the guzzle by figuring out which part of the clue was the definition and using the checkers to guess the answera, which is not a lot of fun in my book. So it’s a curate’s egg for me, good in parts. Rhanks to the Kiwis for some much needed hints and to the compiler.

  8. Found this hard, and very very satisfying; needed the K’s explanations for 5 and 20 down. 4A gets my gold star amongt so many contenders. Thanks to all 😘

  9. I had a slow start, but once I’d got a few checking letters in I was off. Lots of very good clues. Thank you setter and the 2ks.

  10. I found this one easier than the Monday or Tuesday crosswords, but still quite tough.
    I bit of a guess-fest for me, so needed a lot of help with parsings from the 2Kiwis.
    So, a complete crossword (except for 25d) but several with no idea why……
    Favourite 13a…..don’t see or hear that expression much now.
    Thanks to the setter and to the 2 Kiwis.

  11. Superb.

    Loads of fantastic surfaces with some excellent humour. What an excellent way to get Woody Allen into a clue!

    Extremely hard to decide who gets the silverware but I’ll go with 12a, 13a and 16d.

    Many thanks to the 2 Ks and the 19aed setter,


  12. A good start with the 1a lurker when the penny dropped!
    All round excellent cluing througout.
    Last in was 8d ,looking for the Personal Assistant- D’0h another penny.
    Favourite was 12a, thanks to the 2K,s pic-remember seeing the painting in the National many years ago-a rougish face indeed.
    Going for a ***/****

  13. Not overly keen on this setter’s style but I did enjoy 8d and the Quickie pun which both made me smile.
    Thanks to today’s setter and to our 2Ks for the review.

  14. Really wonderful guzzle today with lots to like and smile about. I’m in awe that our setters can keep up such a high standard day after day. I just hope Brian enjoyed it! Thanks to all.

  15. Middle of the night here but got up to correct the answer to 25d where it seems we had reversed the wrong vehicle. It is now correct under the ‘click-here’ button.

    1. Like your comment about reversing the wrong vehicle but surely Racy would be acceptable? Anyway thanks Kiwi for interrupting your sleep on our behalf – hope you will now sleep well again.

  16. Somewhat on the tricky side for a mid-week puzzle or perhaps I was more tired after a busier than usual day – ***/***

    Candidates for favourite – 13a, 18a, 27a, and 24d – and the winner is 24d.

    Thanks to the setter and the 2Kiwis.

  17. 2.5*/4*. I really enjoyed this although I did think that the definition for 16d was a bit dodgy. I found that most of the puzzle went in very smoothly but I did get held up in the SW corner.

    After I had solved the first half-dozen or so clues, I wondered what might be happening with 5 As appearing along the second row. This appears to be irrelevant, but I did notice a huge preponderance of As in whole thing – 24 out of a total of 156 lights! How sad is it to notice that?

    I had four contenders for my top spot: 1a, 27a, 5d & 8d with 27a just getting the nod.

    Many thanks to the setter and to the 2Ks.

    1. You are, indeed, drifting in to sad territory, RD. But, that’s where you’ll find me as I love all that stuff.

  18. An enjoyable and witty puzzle, marred by the rather high anagram count and the ill-considered 25d – surely that should have been picked up by the setter or editor before publication?

    Generally good surfaces but some were quite odd (eg 24d), and admirably concise clueing. Hon Mentions to 1a, 27a, 2d & 8d.

    2.5* / 2.5*

    Many thanks to the setter and to the 2Ks

  19. Great fun! I’ll give it 5* for enjoyment.

    I put RACY too. I didn’t even consider it incorrect until reading the comments above.

    Thanks to the setter and to the 2Ks

  20. What a great puzzle! Took a bit of teasing out but all the more satisfying to finish. Too many good clues to single out a favourite but if I had to choose it would be 1a.
    Thank you to the very clever setter and to the 2Ks.

  21. Found this Wednesday puzzle a fun solve and a tad easier than the last couple of Wednesday offerings have been. Was good entertainment on a miserable Tuesday night here on the ‘Wet Coast” of BC. Oh well, promises of sun for the next few days. No real hold ups in this one and some very good clues that made me smile too.

    2*/4* for me

    Favourites include 1a, 12a, 13a, 15a, 25a, 28a & 25d — with winner 12a … it made me chuckle.
    Lots of clues here worth a smile/laugh/groan including 12a, 13a, 15a, 28a & 2d … I could go on, but I’ll stop here.
    Nice puzzle, very enjoyable.

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

  22. First run through seemed daunting but closer examination revealed an excellent puzzle. On some it was a case of find the definition, get the answer then work out the wordplay. My favs were 3d and 10a, would have got 6d earlier if Kama preceded it!😀
    Thx to all

  23. I have often noticed that women faint when I enter a room, therefore I recognised myself immediately, and placed ‘racy’ as the only possible answer to 25d.

    Thanks to the setter and The TwoKays

  24. A very nice puzzle very witty with lots of favourite, nothing wrong with a soupcon of controversy, namely 25d. Where did I put my cidilla🤔 ***/**** with favourites 18a, 27a, 7d & 18d 😃 Thanks to the 2x Ks and to the Compiler👍

  25. As with one of those brain worm tunes, in 8d I just could not get personal assistant of of my mind for ages, until the penny finally dropped as regards to what PA really meant. I too fell into the racy camp, but having just read one or two comments about the clue, I have now altered my word before reading the hints and the remainder of the blog ;-) Otherwise a very straightforward and enjoyable puzzle to solve during lunchtime. What an odd month November is this year – I have managed to mow our lawns and clear some autumnal leaves, then I spotted ten or more large cabbage white caterpillars chewing away at our nasturtium leaves – plants still in flower too. Even the wildlife have had their odd moments – we found a small hedgehog in the garage, presumably wanting to hibernate (later taken to a local wildlife hospital/centre) then our neighbough finds a longeared bat clinging to the brickwork of his front door step. Thanks to today’s setter and the Two Ks

  26. Easy? No. Enjoyable? Very much so. The last in was the SW, I did get 22d wrong, but I knew it probably was as it didn’t make sense – unforgivable as geography is my strong point, also 25d was wrong but I liked my answer better. I bunged in 8d as the PA misled me, fortunately I had my Road to Damascus moment in time and corrected it. Who says 13a any more? I liked lots, hard to choose a fave, 15a amused, so did 27a.
    Thank you setter, relief to have fun on a Wednesday, and 2Kiwis for unravelling a few. Enjoy your summer!

  27. Morning all. Yes did manage to get back to sleep after the very early interruption to deal with 25d. We always solve on a printed out puzzle and only go back to the website if we feel the need to confirm an answer. It never occurred to us that the answer was anything other than RACY until I happened to check the early comments. Sorry about that.
    Thought there might be discussion on LIVE = ARE in 20d but seems everyone happy with this. We had decided it worked OK.

  28. A little contest I like to have with myself is how many consecutive puzzles I can solve unaided. My all-time record is 13. Today, I put RACY in and the app tells me I failed to complete the puzzle correctly. Having read the comments here it seems I’m far from alone. So now I’m faced with the dilemma of whether I count this as a win and continue my attempt to break my run of 13 or whether I have to consider that as cheating and reset the counter.

    Other than providing this dilemma, it was an excellent puzzle. Thanks to the setter and blogger.

      1. Tom, judging by an infamous past pronoucement, I think we are meant to interpret that as “Don’t reset the counter”. 🙂

        1. Yes, I think Tom must have meant don’t reset it. To be fair, my counter is currently only on 2 anyway after a shock reset on Monday.

        2. Noooooooo! Not again.

          C minus, Tom – could do better.

          Oh well. At least it cements my new nickname.

          Maybe it should be changed to ‘Very disappointing’.

          What am I like…

  29. What a pleasure after spending the afternoon manning the WI stall at a local Christmas Fair. No one interested in joining the WI but all eager to buy the Bailey’s Fudge and homemade bread and cakes. From the first brilliant lurker ( I wonder was the whole guzzle built round this tour de force?) to the racy navy conundrum I loved it.
    My only comment is that I would have written Lah-Di-Dah I think! With aitches, of course. Many thanks to Messrs Setter and Kiwihinters.

    1. Just to be controversial, S&K, I can’t rate the lurker that highly, even though it’s very good, because it’s grammatically incorrect.

      There needs to be a definite or indefinite article preceding ‘bus’.

      I’ve known about this lurker for years and can’t think of a grammatically correct one.

      ‘’That’s how ‘bus’ in essence, isn’t spelt correctly as it should be buss’’.

      That’s s hopeless effort but you get my drift.

  30. Late starting today as I had to be up and out for 9:00am MOHS surgery on my leg but now home and have to say I found this decidedly more tricky than Monday or Tuesday, and got more answers from checkers than clues. I’ll blame it on the numbing shots 😊. First answer was 15a, didn’t even spot the 1a lurker. Don’t think I’ve ever used the word in 2d, but at least I remembered the Russian car. Thanks to setter and 2Kiwis.

  31. Late to this as made my reappearance on the golf course but lasted only 9 holes – it was like a swamp & no fun whatsoever. A bit of lunch then took myself off to the cinema to see Saltburn – a very stylish affair with distinct Brideshead/Talented Mr Ripley influences & very well acted.
    Just done the puzzle over a pint of Landlord – I’m in the racy club & was very nearly beaten by last in & therefore my fav, 8d. Really enjoyable with ticks aplenty
    Thanks to the setter & to the 2Ks

  32. I thought today’s offering a thoroughly enjoyable solve. There was chuckling to be had, a nearly missed lurker and a couple of lovely surface reads. Count me in the racy camp which I still think a more pleasing answer…
    5D and 16D get my vote.

  33. Just realised I forgot to comment which is always a problem as I often finish quite early as our newspaper deliveries are usually about 6.30 a.m. Anyway I enjoyed the solve particularly 12a, 27a, 8d and 22d (out of deference to Kath for once better not call them Favs as 4 would perhaps be pushing it!). Phonetic 26a didn’t occur to me as fashion. Thank you Mysteron and generously sleepless Kiwi(s?).

  34. Good evening
    Late finish tonight! I was expecting to be on standby turn this afty, but got sent out on a job; Paddington to Swansea and back. Delays in both directions! C’est la vie on the iron road…
    Anyway, the afternoon’s activity was meant to have been the crozzie. It’s done now, albeit technically a DNF, as I just couldn’t figure 28a!
    1a and 2d are joint COTD for me. My thanks to our compiler and to 2Ks

  35. Just finished, very enjoyable with lots of smiles but challenging in places I thought. 1a was a great lurker and 13a my favourite.

    Many thanks to the setter and to the 2 kiwis for the hints.

    Is it just me or has Steve Cowling not been on for a while? It is very unusual, I might have just not seen his comments.

  36. I enjoyed this, but failed to finish yesterday, going to bed with 4 still to do in the bottom-left corner. Fortunately they were much easier this morning! Thank you to the setter for the enjoyment, and the Kiwis for the hints, of which I peeked at a few.

    My favourites were 12a (I always seem to like food-related clues, and we did have pork pies for lunch yesterday) and 4d (which is possibly sound personal finance advice, but isn’t going to do much for the pub industry). Cheers, all.

  37. Just looked at the hints and now get the parsing for 8d. I had a slow solve yesterday on the way by road to London. I wasn’t driving. DNF but I did it late last night when home. I thought hard but excellent. All correct apart from 25d. Just so happened that the first three letter vehicle I thought of was car. I struggled with the first part of 3d until I got 9a. 28a was very devious. Thanks Setter and 2Ks.

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