Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 7,449 by Radian

Posted by Simon Harris on August 31st, 2010

Simon Harris.

I’m a big fan of Radian’s puzzles, so was happy to see the name come up today. This was an enjoyable challenge, themed around 1ac.

This was a bit of trawl (pun intended?) through the memory banks as I tried unsuccessfully to complete it without referring to a list of the areas involved. Sadly it’s about thirty years since I heard a shipping forecast, though many of the names are indelibly etched in the public consciousness, I suspect.

*=anag, []=dropped, <=reversed, hom=homophone, cd=cryptic definition, dd=double definition.

1 SEA AREA – A ARE (a surface measure equal to 100 square meters) in SEA[l].
5 FASTNET – dd.
10 SOLE – dd. It took me a while to see how this was even cryptic, but once the theme becomes clear, it’s easy to see that “One” refers to 1ac, as with many other clues.
11 THIRD PARTY – dd., the latter from insurance policies, I would guess.
12 FISHER – [king]FISHER.
14 SE ICELAND – A in LICENSED*. More fully known as Southeast Iceland.
18 AGREE – A GREE[k].
19 AFOOT – TOO FA[r]<.
21 STOP PRESS – S[unday] T[imes] + OPPRESS.
26 IRISH SEA – IRIS (Robinson) + ([caf]E in HAS*).
27 BISCAY – (IS + C) in BAY.
30 TYNE – [pret]TY NE[arly].
31 ESTEEMS – SET* in SEEM*. I don’t think I’ve seen “happy” used as an anagrind before.
32 ASTOUND – [tigh]T in A SOUND.
3 ALEPH – (A HELP)*.
4 ENTHRAL – THEN* + R[e]A[l]L[y].
7 TRAFALGAR – (R in TA) + (A FLAG)*.
9 AIR-CON – C[ooling] in A IRON &lit.
16 ASS – A[dam]SS.
17 DUO – D[o]U[r]O.
20 FORTIES – dd. I’m not sure what “supporting games” is a reference to, perhaps a reader can set me straight?
22 THAMES – HAM in SET<.
23 PEBBLES – from PEEBLES, with B instead of [f]E[bruary].
24 SHANNON – N in (SH + ANON).
28 SET TO – dd.

18 Responses to “Independent 7,449 by Radian”

  1. Eileen says:

    Many thanks, Simon.

    20dn is FOR [supporting] TIES [games].

    A very enjoyable puzzle, I thought. The first two I got, SOLE and BISCAY, before 1ac, made me think I was looking for bays, perhaps.

    I loved the topical Iris Robinson clue, having first, of course, looked for degree abbreviations!

    Once spotted, the theme made the puzzle very easy for me, since I hear the shipping forecast every night – sheer poetry! – but it didn’t detract from the enjoyment.

    I rather liked ‘happy’ as an anagram indicator.

  2. nmsindy says:

    Many thanks for the blog, Simon.

    I thought this was excellent. It was fairly clear early on that I was looking for ‘watery’ answers, but it was only near the very end I twigged the SEA AREA that connected them all. Some very good clues too, my favourites being FASTNET, THIRD PARTY (it is indeed from insurance, esp cars, neither the insured or insurer, the risk you’re obliged to insure for), ALEPH, ASS, SHANNON (esp the seamless join at Number One).

  3. Kathryn's Dad says:

    Thanks, Simon. I usually find Radian too hard, but I perservered with this one and when the theme became apparent it was a big help to finish. Cricket fans will probably have filled the thematic entries without difficulty, because Test Match Special on long wave is interrupted every day for the shipping forecast.

    I thought ‘happy’ as an anagrind was fine – I took it in the sense of ‘drunk’. Very enjoyable puzzle, but I couldn’t help thinking that if Paul/Punk had used this theme, then his risqué side would have no doubt led to DOGGER being in there somewhere …

  4. beermagnet says:

    … not to mention Fitzroy

  5. nmsindy says:

    I thought the clue to AFOOT might have three elements ie a regiment/on the move/ and the reversal as you’ve explained.

  6. walruss says:

    Enjoyable, as others also think. I shouldn’t think ‘happy’ could cause anyone a problem as an anagram indicator, so long as you are ‘happy’, in another sense, with ‘drunk’ used in a similasr way. When you think about it, it doesn’t reallt smash a word up the way it probably should, but like so much else it is probably now a conventional usage!

  7. Tokyocolin says:

    I managed this OK but couldn’t make sense of many clues until I came here and am still not really sure. Why would a “shipping forecast” interrupt the cricket and why would it include rivers, fish, a square and an era (forties). There is a lot about your country I will never understand.

  8. Sil van den Hoek says:

    This crossword was a good One.
    Completed it without ever having heard an (English) shipping forecast [but One can’t blame me]. However, just like nmsindy said, it was clear from the start that One had to think of ‘watery’ answers.

    As ever with Radian, some original indicators.
    ‘Happy’ as an anagrind has already been mentioned, but we don’t see ‘to tidy’ (29ac) and ‘magical’ (25d) that often, too.
    ‘Only occasional’ for taking some letters [the odd ones] in 4d.
    And I’m not sure whether I have ever seen ‘out of bounds’ for a hidden answer before.

    I had to think a while about TRAFALGAR.
    So far, I don’t see the first part of your explanation, Simon.
    I read it as TAR [sailor] around [has] (A FLAG)* [‘up’ as the anagrind, much discussed in the past].

    Many outstanding clues today.
    The simple but very neat AND HOW (6d) was one of them.
    My favourites though were: SHANNON (24d) [in which One was fitted so very well] and the superb PEBBLES (23d).

  9. Stella says:

    I realised what ‘one’ must refer to when I entered in ‘SE Iceland’, but, not receiving British shipping forecasts here in Spain, I resorted to Wiki, with the help of which I got half the crossword in no time 😀

    Thanks for the blog, Simon, but I think you have a typo in 7d, as you are short of an ‘r’

    I read it as T(R)AR around *A FLAG

    Hi K’S D. When you mention the Test Matches, could you add a little something to keep me posted on how they’re going? :)

  10. Eileen says:

    Hi Tokyocolin

    This might help! :-)

  11. sidey says:

    Enjoyed this, well constructed grid.

    I’ve always wondered how many Radio 4 listeners could recite the areas without actually understanding what the bits in between were about.

  12. Kathryn's Dad says:

    beermagnet, you’ve blogged too many Cyclopses, I think.

    Stella, we’ve just won 3-1 but the game’s in the headlines for all the wrong reasons …

    Tokyocolin, there’s a great deal I don’t understand about my own country too, so don’t feel excluded.

    Forties, mid-life crisis, increasing, severe later … let’s not get started.

  13. Sil van den Hoek says:

    …. and Stella (#9), I forgot an R too! :(
    What I meant to say about TRAFALGAR was:
    TAR [sailor] around [has] (R [run] + (A FLAG)*)
    [with ‘up’ the misdirecting anagrind]),
    so still slightly different from your parsing.

  14. flashling says:

    Struggled to get going, didn’t see 1a straight off but as others already said realised the watery theme. I don’t do the sea forecasts so I didn’t get the help there. Memories of circa ten years ago of a giant auricaria crossword, where he not only had the sea areas but also roughly in the right physical place in the grid if that makes sense or so my late sea-faring father-in-law said. An Dhow to keep the watery theme going!

  15. flashling says:

    i’m due to do the expected Dac tomorrow, a busy day at work likely so may well mean a late posting. It’ll be coming eventually I won’t have forgotten.

  16. Wil Ransome says:

    Good crossword. Quite apart from the rather nice theme, I especially liked 11ac.

    But I wasn’t comfortable with the would-be &lit. at 9dn: to say that an air-con is a source of cooling in a club seems very tenuous to me. And in 3dn ‘Acre’s foremost’ is A, not aleph, or am I missing something? OK Acre is in the Middle East but I suspect it might be called something else there, so its first letter might not be A.

  17. Allan_C says:

    Unusually for me, having got 1a, I guessed there was a theme and what it was straight away. A quick check on wiki for a list of ‘ones’ and I was well away. Not sure about the enumeration of 14a, though, I would have thought it should be (1,1,7).

    Wil, Acre (or Akka) is in northern Israel – hence ‘Aleph’, 1st letter of the Hebrew alphabet.

  18. TokyoColin says:

    Thank you Eileen @10. That would have made all the difference at solving time. Often I can deduce the theme in reverse late in the day, but I could not connect Sole, Forties, Trafalgar, Cromarty etc. without at least a smidgin of knowledge of British coastal waters. I will be better prepared next time. (And I realise now that the square is probably named after the battle which was presumably fought in those waters.)

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