Bonus Christmas puzzle

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For a number of years fellow TfTTer astonvilla1 has compiled a politically-themed crossword for the website/blog He suggested to me that others here might enjoy it, and having test-solved the puzzle for him I can say with confidence that he is right. If you’re not interested in politics then this is definitely not for you, but if you are it’s an excellent puzzle that makes a bit of a refreshing change from our usual Times fare. The puzzle can be found here, and comments are open below.

Happy Christmas!

15 comments on “Bonus Christmas puzzle”

  1. … among the leaves so green. I worked on this today between food and family games with no newspaper for the normal puzzle. It tested my knowledge but I’ve got here in the end, providing PETER BONE makes sense and is who I think he is. COD to PERESTROIKA. Thank you AV.
    1. PETER BONE never makes sense.
      But he is the answer. The temporal bone is in the skull.

      Edited at 2018-12-25 09:57 pm (UTC)

      1. Thank you both for indulging me. Particularly James for his unexpected and extremely welcome enthusiasm for the puzzle. It was designed to be diffificult – but for the first time I had to nudge the solvers towards the solution. So next year I think I will pitch it less obscurely!

        I hope some other TfTTers stumble across this puzzle – but I’m not holding my breath!

        Merry Xmas to you both and sincere thanks.


  2. Thank you, av1, for a welcome diversion after the goose. I thought several of the clues were first rate and there were a couple of chuckles along the way. Snookered myself by confidently entering LAB at 1dn (that was before I realised we weren’t in Quickie territory) which, with a couple of additional checkers, unfortunately led to an obsession with the possibility that 1ac might be an anagram of ‘Israeli trio’. I think of Peter Bone as one of those in his party to whom the backwoods would seem a bit too modern.
    1. Thanks very much malcj for putting in the effort!

      Seasonal greetings to you and you family. 😊

  3. Thank you for this and it certainly was challenging. I managed just under 50%, mainly in the East, before giving up so it must be an excellent puzzle! Will anyone be blogging it and/or providing a solution, please? Kind regards, Bob K.
    1. If you look at the comments below the puzzle on the politicalbetting site you’ll see that most if not all of the answers have been provided.
    2. Bob K. Thank you very much for attempting the puzzle. As keriothe says, the answers and explanations can be found on the politicalbetting thread, under the puzzle. I am happy to forward these to you if that would be useful. My email address is If you email me I will happily do this.

      Best wishes!

      1. Bob. Further to your email I have now forwarded you the answers with explanations via email.
  4. A most enjoyable DNF. I got stuck in the NW corner and after several re-visits realized it wasn’t going to yield even after I saw 1a. The problem was my having decided at some point that I couldn’t keep up with Brexit, the gilets jaunes AND what’s going on this side of the pond – so some of the references (e.g. Peter Bone and PUP) were beyond me. But it certainly filled in the odd lull between the goings-on en famille. Many thanks to Aston Villa and Keriothe.
    1. I sympathise: Peter Bone isn’t exactly a household name even in the UK! This is definitely a puzzle for UK-based political anoraks… who also remember Ken Starr.

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