Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 8,124 by Bannsider (Saturday Prize Puzzle, 27/10/12)

Posted by Simon Harris on November 3rd, 2012

Simon Harris.

There may have been an involuntary “oh crikey” emitted when I opened the paper to discover I’d drawn a Bannsider to blog. In the event this wasn’t as hard as it might have been, but was every bit as enjoyable as one has come to expect from this very well-regarded setter.

I didn’t spot any sort of theme, but there were references to quite a number of people, the minority of whom I had actually heard of, although this didn’t prove too much of an obstacle in the event.

Across
1,11 GREATER MANCHESTER Bury division: agreement’s charter for resolution (7,10)
(AGREEMENT’S CHARTER)*
5 FEARFUL Loud telling-off makes one wary (7)
Forte + EARFUL
9 HINDU Believer showing rear for all to see (5)
HIND + U. U is the cinema classification denoting that there is no age restriction on who may view a film
10 BERNHARDT Actress’s long, central part on radio (9)
hom. of “burn” + hom. of “heart”. Sarah Bernhardt, an actress from a little before my time
12 BERG Composer’s second-rate bit of work (4)
B + ERG. Presumably Alban Berg, who – despite that GCSE in Music – I think I’ve only heard of in the context of crosswords
14 RAPSCALLION Rogue performances by Public Enemy Number One returning on visit (11)
RAPS + CALL + (NO 1)<
18 SQUIGGLIEST Hack GQ utilises good for the most slovenly of writing (11)
(GQ UTILISES Good)*
21 ITCH Heads off in total chaos: hundreds are dying (4)
In Total Chaos Hundreds
22,28 MICHAELMAS DAISIES Winner alongside podium that is covered in common flowers (10,7)
MICHAEL Winner (patronising insurance salesman) + ((DAIS + IE) in MASS)
25 AXMINSTER Carpeting from a cross vicar I ignored once (9)
A + X + MIN[i]STER
26 AILED Troubled when TV cook returns (5)
DELIA< Smith
27 EARTHLY Coarse stocking line – out of this world! (7)
Line in EARTHY
Down
1 GO HOME Hit target? Try one that got to No 10 in the sixties (2,4)
GO + Alec Douglas-HOME
2 ERNANI Daft turning up around end of Beggar’s Opera (6)
[begga]R in INANE<. Solved from wordplay and checking letters in my case
3 TRUTH DRUGS Prescriptions for Verity coming from Yanks – pity doctor’s got involved (5,5)
(RUTH + DR) in TUGS
4 REBUS In Edinburgh, busy on public transport (5)
RE + BUS. This is “busy” as in “policeman”, with Inspector Rebus, an Edinburgh-based detective being the lead character in countless books by Ian Rankin
5 FORTESCUE Historian’s succinct description of snooker player’s strength? (9)
FORTES CUE, implying that a snooker player’s forte is his cue. Another one solved from wordplay, as the works of John Fortescue, military historian, seem to have passed me by
6 ACHY Agreed to hug children in pain (4)
CHildren in AY
7 FORGET IT Make a brass knocker? That?s nothing, really (6,2)
FORGE TIT. A bit racy, that one
8 LITIGANT Man in suit, some distance from China, chasing game soldier perhaps (8)
LI + TIG + ANT. If I told you that I knew all about the Li, a Chinese unit of distance, I’d be lying. Still, the clue was solvable without that knowledge, and the definition – “man in suit” – is rather nice
13 GLITTERATI Gilt attire might become them (10)
(GILT ATTIRE)*
15 PALMISTRY China unclear about role initially, reading between the lines? (9)
PAL + (R[ole] in MISTY)
16 ASPIRATE H-Hook-like? (8)
AS PIRATE
17 DULCIMER Cure mild hiccups, bringing instrument (8)
(CURE MILD)*
19 AMALFI Friend of Sartre entertaining Jarry briefly in Italian resort (6)
ALF Jarry in AMI. Apparently a French playwright from some years back. No? Me neither.
20 B-SIDES Partners for singles to boot solitude – finally – out (1-5)
B[e]SIDES
23 HARED Demanding to keep ecstasy, did speed (5)
E in HARD
24 ANKH Withdrawal from bank, Hatton Cross (4)
[b]ANK H[atton Cross]

*= anagram; < = reversed; [] = removed; hom = homophone

12 Responses to “Independent 8,124 by Bannsider (Saturday Prize Puzzle, 27/10/12)”

  1. kloot says:

    I loved this crossword. Loads of lovely clues beautifully crafted. In my haste I bodged on probably the simplest clue of all putting ache instead of achy!!!!

    clue of day: 3dn.

  2. Tatrasman says:

    Likewise re ache/achy. I managed to get the obscure cultural references though purely guesswork in cases where they don’t appear in my OD of English.

  3. Dormouse says:

    Argh! I did that with 6dn too, kloot! And I’m sure I’d parsed it in my mind correctly.

    Took me ages to get “Berg” despite him being one of my favourite composers. Got all his stuff on my iPod (and there’s a new production of Wozzeck in London next year). Kept on thinking “Bach” (not a favourite).

    I thought Jarry was well known for Ubu Roi. Never seen it, but it’s got a famous opening line. He also wrote The Crucifixion considered as an Uphill Bicycle Race, which led to J.G. Ballard writing The Assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy considered as a Downhill Motor Race.

  4. crypticsue says:

    For me this was a ‘who are you and what have you done with Bannsider?’ crossword as his usually take me days and days to sort out. I wrote in most of this one without too much trouble, grinding to a halt with the NE corner which took further cogitation and I still didn’t get FORTESCUE.

    Very very enjoyable – hard to pick a favourite from so many – thanks to Bannsider and Simon.

  5. Querulous says:

    Never heard of Jarry either, but at least now I know where the group Pere Ubu got their name.

  6. allan_c says:

    Simon, I wouldn’t recommend Wozzek if you’ve not heard any Berg before. But try his violin concerto – though Dormouse might not agree as it quotes a Bach chorale in the final movement.

    As to the crossword, good stuff and not as difficult as some from Bannsider. Not heard of Jarry either but didn’t really need to have done as AMALFI was fairly obvious.

    Thanks to setter and blogger.

  7. Dormouse says:

    Indeed, the violin concerto is one of my all-time favourite pieces of music, and I have three different versions on my iPod including the 1936 recording conducted by Webern, its second ever performance. Heard it one time on the radio as I was making dinner. That was the most emotional experience I’ve ever had whilst stirring custard.

  8. Flashling says:

    @Cryptic Sue, I was wondering if it was mis-attributed at times, the BanMan’s easiest to me by far in the Indy, but some absolute corkers though.

  9. Lancastrian Bluenose says:

    Enjoyed the crossword. Bury is in Lancashire: greater manchester was abolished in 1986

  10. Simon Harris says:

    Thanks, LB. While the county council was indeed abolished in 1986, the Greater Manchester Police, the GMCA, Wikipedia and the 2.68 million people who currently live in Greater Manchester might question that claim.

  11. Lancastrian Bluenose says:

    Hi Simon

    Perhaps I can explain away from fifteensquared why your statement is incorrect.Don’t believe everything you read in Wikipedia !

  12. Bannsider says:

    Thanks all for blog and comments.
    This crossword is quite old, and when I revisited it it occurred to me that a few of the clues needed simplifying, which may explain why the result was an easier puzzle than normal. No bad thing I would say.

    As to the whereabouts of Bury these days, it would seem that Bury Council also believe that they are in Greater Manchester(!) Although there’s no harm in also regarding it as being part of Lancashire also.

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