< Slip No. 987 View the clue list Slip No. 995 >



1.  P. F. Henderson: This word’s not right for ‘shy’! (i.e. brash less r = bash, & lit.; bash, shy = attempt).

2.  R. J. Whale: Making brandy handy will render you this? (i.e. br as h, & lit.).

3.  E. J. Burge: Forward head butting in for a time in bath? (ras for a t in bath).


R. B. Adcock: Our race? No it is America’s instead (British with US for it is, & lit.).

D. Ashcroft: Needing to be sat on – by caviare? (2 mngs.; i.e. crushed ice).

M. Barley: Bits of broken rock and shorn hedgerow (first letters & lit.).

Dr P. M. J. Bennett: Rude burp – result of prune (3 mngs.).

J. R. Beresford: Bush’s heart restored … as right as rain (Bush with r as for us).

Mrs A. Boyes: Start of bloody day’s shooting, or bloody end to a day’s hunting (b rush; fox’s tail).

C. J. Brougham: Boldfaced: Chambers styles me so, see? (comp. anag. incl. c).

G. Cuthbert: Too ready to solicit? Run in! (r in bash).

R. V. Dearden: A Stoic troubled with heartburn could bear this eructation (comp. anag. & lit.).

N. C. Dexter: Bushy tail disappearing once Ranter’s poked his head in (R in bush(y), & lit.; R. one of J. Peel’s hounds).

R. J. Hooper: Branches axed in cuts to services, perhaps? Reduced rail network remains (BR + ash; service2).

F. P. N. Lake: Plumping quick-sticks? (2 mngs.; impetuous, hawthorn clippings falling).

A. Lawrie: Lots of chips will make you plump and full of face (3 mngs.).

G. G. Loder: Bad crash – dispatch rider thrown clear – broken bits found in empty sidecar, maybe (bad crash less ADC; sidecar cocktail).

R. K. Lumsdon: Bed rocks as producer of Twin Peaks starts to screen humping (bra s h; ref. TV series).

D. F. Manley: Money’s short with hospital on the rocks, broken down, supplying bed occasionally (bras(s) + H; ref. NHS crisis).

R. S. Morse: Loose clippings from hedge rows, slight attack and bold (anag. of first letters, 3 defs., & lit.).

R. J. Palmer: Odd bits of hornbeams, having been trimmed? (anag. of odd letters, & lit.).

P. L. Stone: Bush trim? Nation relieved his heart is right as rain (Bush with r as for US, 2 defs.).


Mrs G. M. Barker, E. A. Beaulah, R. C. Bell, Mrs F. A. Blanchard, G. C. Brown, B. Burton, C. J. & M. P. Butler, E. Chalkley, C. A. Clarke, Mrs D. Colley, D. B. Cross, J. Dromey, M. Earle, C. E. Faulkner-King, C. J. Feetenby, Dr I. S. Fletcher, B. Franco, P. D. Gaffey, S. Gaskell, N. C. Goddard, B. Greer, J. F. Grimshaw, J. P. H. Hirst, C. Hobbs, R. Jacks, J. H. C. Leach, J. C. Leyland, J. D. Lockett, E. Looby, W. F. Main, P. W. Marlow, H. W. Massingham, G. L. McStravick, W. L. Miron, J. J. Moore, T. J. Moorey, C. J. Morse, T. W. Mortimer, Mrs P. Murray, S. J. O’Boyle, R. Phillips, Mrs A. Price, D. R. Robinson, M. Sanderson, A. J. Shields, M. Small, D. A. Smith, Dr N. Smith, P. D. Stonier, R. C. Teuton, G. A. Tomlinson, V. C. D. Vowles, Mrs H. D. Williams.

1. R. J. Hooper (3 prizes, 5 V. H. C.’s); 2. D. F. Manley (2, 6); 3. (equal) M. Barley (0, 9), C. J. Morse (1, 7), R. Phillips (2, 5); 6. (equal) P. F Henderson (2, 4), T. J. Moorey (1, 6); 8. (equal) R. S. Morse (1, 5), F. R. Palmer (1, 5); 10. (equal) E. J. Burge (2, 2), N. C. Dexter (1, 4), Dr. I. S. Fletcher (0, 6), J. E Grimshaw (0, 6), A. Lawrie (1, 4), R. K. Lumsdon (1, 4), H. W. Massingham (0, 6); 17. (equal) D. Ashcroft (0, 5), C. A. Clarke (1, 3), B. Greer (2, 1), Dr. E. Young (1, 3); 21. (equal) Mrs A. Boyes (1, 2), C. J. Brougham (0, 4), R. Dean (0, 4), H. Freeman (0, 4), R. E. Kimmons (1, 2), J. C. Leyland (0, 4), C. G. Millin (0, 4), T. E. Sanders (0, 4), W J. M. Scotland (0, 4), G. A. Tomlinson (0, 4), A. J. Wardrop (0, 4), R. J. Whale (1, 2).
CONSOLATION PRIZES:- M. Barley, Dr. I. S. Fletcher, J. F. Grimshaw, H. W. Massingham, D. Ashcroft, C. J. Brougham, R. Dean, H. Freeman, J. C. Leyland, C. G. Millin, T. E. Sanders, W. J. M. Scotland, G. A. Tomlinson, A. J. Wardrop.

536 entries, over 150 with BRUSH for BRASH. After some thought I decided I had to accept this alternative, ‘lopped or broken twigs’ being semantically close if not identical to ‘clippings of hedges or trees’. I hadn’t noticed the alternative myself and was cross with myself for this failure, but I was surprised that none of the BRUSH-merchants seem to have hesitated over their choice, since I never normally rephrase (as distinct from shortening) the Chambers definitions I choose to give you. Why should I, after all? I find it hard to believe that any of those who clued BRUSH would still have done so if they’d seen the relevant definition at BRASH. Are clippings and loppings different, I wonder? Never mind. (Look, incidentally, at the first definition in Chambers for TRASH2.)
Actual errors occurred as the result of failure to understand my clues to BONE (‘Beaune’), FRAB (‘Rab’ Butler, not ‘Rhett’ Butler) and SONE (Eno’s Fruit Salts – remember them?), and there were mutterings about my giving ‘stalker’ a capital ‘S’ in the clue to PRYSE. As I’ve said before, I regard it as permissible to do this on occasion, but not the opposite (giving a lower case initial to a proper name). Older solvers may remember the late Mrs Jarman’s prize-winning clue to CALLOUS (Ximenes crossword No. 1140): ‘Alien to Ruth, like the corn’. At the time, X commented: ‘A brilliant winner: the capital R is a pity [sic], but it would be hard to avoid, and I have often said that with a noun it is legitimate, though to be avoided if possible.’
All that said, BRASH and BRUSH between them offered a huge range of possibilities, which were duly explored in a sizeable entry. A particularly popular ploy, understandable in view of the ‘clippings’ definition, was of the ‘first letters & lit.’ type. There were so many of these that only the best achieved higher than HC status. President Bush and his heart problems were also very much in evidence.
Congratulations, finally, to Mr. Hooper for regaining first place in the annual honours list. He is on cracking form and will take some beating in next year’s list (which includes the 12 monthly competitions and the Christmas competition). And my thanks as usual to Mr Dearden for keeping an accurate record of points awarded throughout the year.


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