DT 30635 (Hints) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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DT 30635 (Hints)

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 30635 (Hints)

The Saturday Crossword Club (hosted by crypticsue)

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A cloudy Saturday morning brings one of those crosswords where I took a while to choose which clues to hint – I am sure a few people will say I picked the wrong ones!

I chose some illustrations for a number of clues but the system won’t let me upload them and I have got other things to do this morning without wrestling with technology!

Most of the terms used in these hints are explained in the Glossary and examples are available by clicking on the entry under “See also”. Where the hint describes a construct as “usual” this means that more help can be found in The Usual Suspects, which gives a number of the elements commonly used in the wordplay. Another useful page is Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing, which features words with meanings that are not always immediately obvious.

A full review of this puzzle will be published after the closing date for submissions.


1a           Person unknown from Douglas perhaps (4)
A male person and a mathematical unknown combine to give the nationality of someone from an island, the capital of which is Douglas

3a/20d Jazzman rings Private Pike’s mum according to Spooner (5,5)
My brain tends to retain a lot of potentially useful (Mr CS would say useless!) information but I was  surprised that I remembered the forename of Mrs Pike in Dad’s Army.  Take a synonym for rings and the name and mangle them in the way we associate with the dreaded Reverend Spooner

11a         Speed reduced in large town, steering clear of Congress? (8)
Truncate (reduced) a synonym for speed and insert what remains into a large town – the capital C for Congress is there to mislead!

13a/3d Is it a beastly drawing? (6,9)
A cryptic definition of a power of attraction due to physical attributes – the ‘drawing’ is an act of pulling rather than an artistic work

22a         Comment column in The Watchtower? (11,4)
More misleading capitals – a remark (comment) and a column combine to give a military watchtower

24a         Russians ultimately in American airspace (5)
An air-filled bodily cavity – the ultimate letter of RussianS, IN (from the clue) and an abbreviation for American

25a         Goodness associated with the unfinished story (4)
An interjection of surprise (goodness) with the first two (unfinished) letters of THe


1d           Lost doctor swallowing special rum (9)
An abbreviated doctor ‘swallowing’ an anagram (rum) of SPECIAL

2d           In North Country area’s very blissful state (7)
The abbreviation for North followed by an Islamic Republic (country) and A (from the clue) into which is inserted (in) the abbreviation for Very

5d           Endless criticism about old philosopher (5)
A disciple of Zeno the philosopher – almost all of some informal criticism goes ‘about’ the abbreviation for Old

12d         Host acts badly gorging Japanese dish (9)
The bread or wine taken in a religious service (host) – an anagram (badly) of ACTS into which is inserted (gorging) a Japanese noodle dish

13d         Adult record in a sense showing equivalence (9)
The abbreviation for Adult, A (from the clue) and some intellect or sense into which is inserted a record

14d         Stick it out, then abandon final (4-5)
Stick it out to the end followed by a verb meaning to abandon

18d         Guy disheartened after a game in defence (7)
The outside (disheartened) letters of GuY go after A (from the clue) and a game


As this is a Prize crossword, please don’t put any ANSWERS, whether WHOLE, PARTIAL or INCORRECT, or any ALTERNATIVE CLUES in your comment. If in doubt, leave it out!

Please read these instructions carefully – they are not subject to debate or discussion. Offending comments may be redacted or, in extreme cases, deleted. In all cases the administrator’s decision is final.


The Quick Crossword pun:    BARBER + QUEUED    = BARBECUED


100 comments on “DT 30635 (Hints)
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  1. Enjoyable puzzle with 11a raising a chuckle!

    For ages got stumped by missing an obvious lurker for my last one in 🤦🏻‍♀️

    Not sure I quite understand why 6a is what I’ve got though? It makes sense for the 2nd word, and for both the words together, but not for just the first word?

    Thanks to the setter and CS!

    1. The first three letters are used to indicate the surname you were born with (rather than a married surname. The final letter is an abbreviation for died

        1. Hi Heather

          An association is an organised body of people which you obviously know.

          So, this is what an organised body of people in the world of football is called.

          Well, that’s my take on it.

          I ought to revise my score to 4.5 for the 7d ‘Doh!’’

  2. Slightly tougher than previous Saturdays to my mind. It did help getting the first three across clues because they gave checkers to lead me in. I’m not sure about 2d so will need to look at the hints – if it is hinted, of course. I don’t often go for a short one for COTD but I thought 25a was very clever so it gets the award.

    I even enjoyed the Reverend Spooner and I never thought I would say that. As CS says, it helps to remember Mrs. Pike.

    Thank you, setter for the fun challenge. Thank you, CS for the hints. I believe the Quickie pun is slightly longer.

  3. This was excellent. Spot on for a Saturday jobbie.

    Stacks of great surfaces with plenty of neat constructions. I like the purity of clues like 6a, 9a, 21a and 23a. Being an uber Dads Army fan and an admirer of Reverend Noosper, I loved 3a/20d.

    Tres difficile to pick three but I’ll go with 13a/3d, 12d and 16d.

    Many thanks to the S cubed and CS.

    3*/5*. (I’m sure I’ll be the only person to give 5 stars as so many of you hate multi-worders splashed across different clues. I like them as you can often get your teeth into two quadrants)

  4. Far above my ability. Way way too tough. Zero fun with complex long winded clues needing too much specific knowledge.
    For me a very poor Saturday puzzle.
    Thx for trying to help with the hints

  5. Good SPP fun – **/****

    With some double unches, a ‘simple’ Spoonerism, and a couple of ‘multi-worders splashed across different clues’ (thanks Tomds) – I may be going out on a limb but my Toonie is going on Cephas as today’s setter.

    Candidates for favourite – 11a, 13a/3d, and 24a – and the winner by a country mile is 11a!

    Thanks to Cephas, or whomsoever if my Toonie goes down the drain, and thanks to CS.

  6. Personally not at all a jazz fan, so I made a face at 3a/20d but my mum has the same name as Private Pike’s, so all 8a after all!
    I did not feel that I had 7d parsed quite correctly, but that may be just me 😐
    Thanks to CS and setter

    1. Re 7d “regularly” is telling you to select in a sequential order a selection of letters from the words that follow.

              1. You know, I didn’t spot that! I must have gone through the regular letters got the answer and entered it before I finished going through them. If that makes sense.

                Thanks, CS

                1. Came here to read the comments and you’re right, it doesn’t quite work!
                  I, like others, must have got the answer before getting to the end of the regular letters.

    2. If I’m not mistaken, the name at 3/20 is also the name of a regular poster here.
      And our labrador too (see pic) – who wasn’t named after her!

      1. It is indeed – she’ll be very chuffed (the commenter not the dog, as the dog probably won’t know what you are talking about!)

      2. The following morning. Sober. You are right about the name if indeed you are referring to me. I have a complex moniker always having been called by my middle name and by George something completely different! Wanted desperately to be called by my first name hence the pseudonym. Lovely guzzle which I have just completed, George sitting on the balcony with a cup of lemon tea and the sun shining. Feels good! I am really chuffed having my name on the top line and of course, always pose with one leg in front of the other !

  7. Good luck to any non-Brits with the 3 and 20 combo, compiler was certainly not a stupid boy for including that one, great puzzle, great fun.

  8. It was very tough and not much fun, to be honest, but I got there in the end. Thanks for the tips, and thanks to the setter for a genuine challenge.

    1. I agree, aPaul. I got 4 clues, one in each corner on the first pass and verslowly filled in over half the clues. Unfortunately, I had other things to do, so its a DNF for me. Like Brian, I found the clues overly complicated and there was not much enjoyment to be had. Sorry, but thanks to the compiler and to CS for the hints

      1. Just started this week to do crosswords again after a long (20+ years) break. The Telegraph offering me a year of online puzzles for £4.99 was quite an incentive.

        I needed help to finish it and CS’s hints were very welcome. I’m viewing these early days as a learning experience and not worrying about needing assistance.

        But I find RT’s concise clues more to my taste…

        1. A twenty year break? I don’t think I could leave guzzles for that long!
          Welcome back and please comment again. 👍

  9. I did most of this on the bus to take my drowned phone in for repair (thanks to Bruce in Sunderland) I skipped past the ending of 7d without noticing the slight error, can you regularly swap from odd to even letters between words? n/m
    Thanks To CS for some great hints 13d was my favourite when the penny dropped
    One X and a spoonerism suggested proXimal but as he was here Friday and expected Sunday I doubt it is him, but thanks anyway for a slightly tougher and therefore more enjoyable SPP than most

    (I am 62 years young today and we are going out to a vegetarian curry house that the Hairy Bikers recommended)

    1. Happy Birthday! Hope you enjoyed your curry.
      I drove back from Ulverston this afternoon and saw hundreds of motorbikes heading to Barrow on the Dave Myers Memorial Ride. The streets were lined with well wishers waving the bikers on. It was really quite a sight, Dave would have been chuffed!

    2. Thanks for the Hippo Burpday Wishes a delightful meal at Prashad was had and enjoyed by all even the carnivores didn’t miss the meat

  10. Trying hard to get guzzle dine but am on Eurostar travelling business premier on our way to Maastricht on our 67th wedding anniversary and they keep plying us with champagne and food. I WILL get round to it

      1. I don’t think so although he is a great showman and they are very proud of him. George used to do a lot of business in Maastricht and we are linking up with old friends. The lunch was by Raymond Blanc! They kept refilling our glasses so may well go to sleep now!

      1. Thank you all for your good wishes. I never signed up to going to bed with a 91 year old ….Linked up with our dearest old friend Toine & Inki who met us in Brussels and drove us here, have not stopped talking or celebrating all day. When we left Eurostar they presented us with a bottle of Piper Heidsick champagne- how nice was that! It is only 9.35 BST but we are showered and in bed exhausted and I shall now try to finish the guzzle. No paper DT for the next few days so behave yourselves whilst I’m off piste. (PS you do realise I was only 4 when he married me!)

  11. I really enjoyed this puzzle. I was slowed down significantly by getting the answer to 3A at an early stage which gave me a V in 22A and I then spent ages trying to work the name of the uniformed envangelists into the solution, due to the misdirection of the final word in the clue.

  12. Wow that required some application but it was all worthwhile for a very enjoyable workout. 12d had to be so was bunged in but I needed hint help as I didn’t know Japanese dish. SE section brought up the rear. My standout Fav was 24a – clever misdirection. 🥂Happy Birthday to SJB and felicitations/bon voyage to Daisy & George 💐. Thank you Mysteryone and CS.

  13. I really can’t say I enjoyed this puzzle at all. Required lots of e-help on many clues, and even then much of it still made little sense to me in the end. Not the sort of puzzle I like.

    5*/1* today

    Favourite was 8a as it was indeed about the only clue that was.

    Thanks to setter & CS for hints

  14. For me, another very enjoyable puzzle in the Saturday series, this one including some more adventurous clue stylings.

    I thought the Spoonerism really funny, 11A also witty with its misleading definition, 13A 3D a great pun, 22 & 24 also up there. 7D does seem a little out on reflection, but I didn’t actually notice it whilst solving. Obviously I was trompe l’oeiled for that one!

    Thanks to the witty and intrepid setter, and to Sue for her usual helpful hints.

  15. Perhaps this was a little harder than recent Saturdays but it was pleasingly tricky, fairly clued and no real obscurities. It was well worth persevering with and was most rewarding. 12d was clever, elegant and my favourite.

    Many thanks to our setter for a great challenge, and to Sue.

  16. Found that quite a challenge and a notch or two tougher than recent Spp’s. Took me an age to decide on the Spoonerism, but common sense prevailed in the end. Many great clues including the 13a/3d combo but my podium comprises 11 and 24a with top spot being 12d. I took an age trying to justify various Japanese dishes before rereading the clue closely put me on the correct track. Thanks to compiler and CS.

  17. The on-line version of 1a reads: “Person unknown from Dougla,s perhaps”(4)

    Thought the comma might be significant, but it just seems to be an error.

    ps Talking of errors: Shame about the Orwellian clue.

    Apart from that I seem to have enjoyed more than Brian.

  18. Lots of fun. I did find 3a/20d hard to workout as it seem me like the answer should be the other words, not the jazz man. The me for a while.

  19. I found this tough, but like stanXYZ I enjoyed it more than Brian did.

    Thanks to crypticsue for the hints…especially the Japanese dish (no ideas on this in the Meringue household).
    Thanks to the setter too….particularly impressed by 8a and 22a.

    Blustery winds here today….so I am getting the washing dry.
    But still pretty cool for the time of year.
    We are having some Australian family to visit early next month….they said they hoped our summer would be warmer than their winter…..then almost cancelled the trip when I told them what the temp was (13C that evening). I suspect in Brisbane that counts as Arctic….maybe Antarctic

  20. That was tough but fun and for once I got a spoonerism without leaving it to the end. Like others I am puzzled by how the end of 7d was achieved, it did not make sense to me. Otherwise loads to like although I initially thought I was not going to get started, I am glad I returned to it and it all slowly fell into place.

    Many congratulations to George and Daisygirl on your anniversary and many happy returns to SJB.
    Many thanks to the setter and to CS for the hints.

    1. It’s a shame this is a prize puzzle. If it wasn’t I could quote a bit of Chris Lancaster’s book which might help with 7d.

      1. Seeing a few people saying 7d doesn’t work, I re-read it and see there is an error. I must have read it quickly originally and skipped over the error.

  21. Mmm I wonder if I have managed to fit the wrong answer (it parses perfectly!) into 19a? Is there a spelling mistake in the online version – e instead of a?

  22. Much of the day spent on Skype with No.2 daughter trying to determine whether the grandchildren have or have not got a chickenpox rash! Crossword had to take second place and to be honest I didn’t particularly enjoy it anyway. Best clues for me were the 19a bridge and the comment column.

    Thanks to our setter and to CS for the hints.

  23. I’m afraid 9a and 12d didn’t really work for us and 7d just didn’t work. Most of the rest were ok with some difficult clues sprinkled among them. Favourite was 11a. Thanks to the setter and CS.

  24. Swimming in molasses comes to mind! I’m DNF, can’t spend any more time on this. I see it’s a Toombarloom offering, I’m never on wavelength there. I had no idea who Private Pike was, much less his mum, nor the jazzman, added to that it was a spoonerism, I stood no chance. I completed the East, but West has missing teeth all over the place. However, let me hasten to add, Toombarloom has a Labrador, not only that but black and a picture of gorgeousness. I must love him, if only for that.
    Thank you Toombarloom, and CrypticSue for the hints, they were a big help before I ran out of steam.

    1. Is this a Mr Tumble crossy?

      If so, that’s two in four days which is pretty rare. In fact, is it a first?

    2. I don’t think it is Twmbarlwm. He was just pointing out that the name in the Spoonerism is the real name of one of our favourite commenters

  25. I really enjoyed this puzzle. Apart from 1a and 7d, assuming the second was a typo too, both looking forward to see if there was a sudden switch to the first letters of the next two words.
    Confess to cheating on Luke’s mum, having only ever seen a couple of episodes, but did note that the actress who played her spells the Jazzman’s last name properly, with an ‘e’, like my wife!
    Have got ticks all over the place, so will just go with 11a as fave of the day!
    Many thanks to whosoever and for CS for the blog.

  26. Finally had time to complete the puzzle in daylight hours after a busy week. Now on holiday so long may it continue. Enjoyed this one and found it a steady solve, neither too easy or too hard. I too had to cheat to recall Pike’s mum ! Thanks to setter and CS.

  27. Can’t say I enjoyed this today. Did finish, but it was an uphill slog, and I needed to much help for any feeling of satisfaction. 1a was a gift (despite the misprint in the digital version), as was 8a when the light bulb finally went off. I confess I was misled by the capitals in a couple of clues. Thanks to setter and CS,

  28. For me, that was one of those puzzles that takes an age to get started, but once you do it all falls into place.

    As others have said, missed the obvious lurker for my last one in.

  29. 3/4. Enjoyable if a little heavy on GK which required the help of Mr Google. My favourites were 13a&3d and 11a. Thanks to the setter and CS.

  30. Struggled with this one and needed help.
    Top picks were 11a, 25a and 17d.
    Thanks to CrypticSue and the setter.

  31. Enjoyed this one, especially the Spoonerism (don’t often say that!).
    Thanks to the setter and Cryptic Sue.

  32. Late to this & completed while watching the golf at Muirfield Village. A very enjoyable puzzle & a good bit tougher for me than is the norm for an SPP judging by the time it took for one or two pennies to drop. Didn’t spot the blip at 7d. Lots of ticks but the Rev takes top spot.
    Thanks to the setter & Sue

  33. A good puzzle completed in two sittings. 3a/20d got an audible chuckle from me so definitely my COTD.

  34. I finished this off on a second sitting on Sunday. Tough but enjoyable. I don’t know if anyone will pick this up so late, but just in case I had a question on crossword etiquette – the Spoonerism is also a (in part) a homophone. Strictly speaking should that be clued too or does it not matter when the Reverend is involved?

      1. So I guess strictly speaking the clue should have indicated it was a homophone of rings AND a Spoonerism.

        1. No, the clue is simply a Spoonerism. A Spoonerism always involves the transposition of the initial sounds of words in one phrase to get a second meaningful phrase having quite a different meaning. The second phrase is typically clued by indicating it sounds like an equivalent phrase. Here the name of the jazzman is the first phrase. Transpose the initial sounds of the first and last names to get a second phrase that sounds like (is equivalent to) “rings Private Pike’s mum”.

  35. Only just had the chance to tackle this. I have possibly solved 7 clues before conceding defeat.

    I know more about North Korean opera than I do about jazz, let alone Pike’s mother.

    Once again kudos to those who were able to finish this offering.

    Thanks to all.

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