Times Quick Cryptic 2030 by Wurm

Posted on Categories Quick Cryptic

Solving time: 10 minutes. Distracted a little by what I take to be an error in the clue at 20ac.

As usual definitions are underlined in bold italics, {deletions and substitutions are in curly brackets} and [anagrinds, containment, reversal and other indicators in square ones]. I usually omit all reference to positional indicators unless there is a specific point that requires clarification.

1 Tree garden run well in a corporation (9)
R (run) + BORE (well) contained by [in] A + TUM (corporation). A borehole may be dug to find water but the only direct definition I can find for  ‘well / bore’ is qualified as Australian.
6 Catch a police officer (3)
Two meanings. ‘Catch a packet’ and ‘cop a packet’ are slang for finding oneself in trouble or misfortune of some sort.
8 City stores record in volcanic hill (7)
LOG (record) contained by [in] CONE (volcanic hill). SOED has CONE as: A cone-shaped mountain or peak; esp. one of volcanic origin.
9 Learner at home with good old jargon (5)
L (learner), IN (at home), G (good), O (old)
10 Noticed train shifting coach inappropriately? (12)
Anagram [shifting] of NOTICED TRAIN
12 Heard French port is bust, in part (6)
Sounds like [heard] “Brest” (French port)
13 Right to support Her Majesty (6)
PROP (support), ER (Her Majesty)
16 Subcontinental adder seen in unexpected hot spell (6,6)
INDIAN (subcontinental), SUMMER (adder). The origin of the expression is disputed but it seems to be North American rather than something from the Asian subcontinent.
19 Together with chopped mango (5)
Anagram [chopped] of MANGO
20 West County runner with attractive top (7)
EXE (West County runner), CUTE (attractive). The River Exe is in Devon, a county in the west of England, but the region is always known as ‘the West Country’ so I assume an ‘r’ has been omitted from the second word of the clue. This threw me a little whilst solving.
22 Convent girl in Dublin undecided (3)
Hidden [in] {Dubli}N UN{decided}
23 Derby date changed for sleeping partner? (5,4)
Anagram [changed] of DERBY DATE. I like the definition.
1 Cunning leader missing from demo (4)
{m}ARCH (demo) [leader missing]
2 Poise shown by Turing for example in times past (7)
ALAN (Turing for example) contained by [in] BCE (times past – Before the Common Era)
3 Fury endless in downmarket newspaper (3)
RAG{e} (fury) [endless]
4 Worry intervenes in attempt to find agreement (6)
EAT (worry) contained by [intervenes in] TRY (attempt)
5 Lightweight Dicky trapped in MiG strike (9)
ILL (dicky) contained by [trapped] in MIG, then RAM (strike). ‘MiG’ is a brand of Russian aircraft.
6 Dance company not giving assistance for beginners (5)
CO (company), then N{ot} G{iving} A{ssistance} [for beginners]
7 Jetty accommodates one adventurer (7)
PIER (jetty) contains [accommodates] ONE
11 Shotgun moved around LA for attack (9)
Anagram [moved] of SHOTGUN containing [around] LA
12 Mind catching it in UK? (7)
BRAIN (mind) containing [catching] IT. It has been the subject of debate here on previous occasions that ‘mind’ and ‘brain’ are not the same thing , but SOED, amongst other sources, confirms that in colloquial usage the words can sometimes be interchangeable.
14 Penny to pick up — take it (7)
P (penny), RESUME (pick up)
15 Frenzied dances go to higher level (6)
Anagram [frenzied] of DANCES
17 Flood in lower position to involve river (5)
DOWN (lower position) containing [to involve] R (river)
18 Busy worker recoils at first drink (4)
BEE (busy worker), R{ecoils} [at first]
21 Bank not opening in cathedral city (3)
{r}ELY (bank) [not opening]

52 comments on “Times Quick Cryptic 2030 by Wurm”

  1. ‘West County’ did strike me as a bit odd–why the capital C? why not ‘Western’?–but ‘West Country’ didn’t occur to me. Whatever the origin of the phrase, an Indian summer is hardly a hot spell. 6:54.
      1. Pretty much as Webster’s (Collins) or Lexico define it; unseasonably warm autumn weather. It may have heated up in the UK, of course. A couple of the many Lexico examples do fit your definition.
    1. I spent time on this clue thinking that the missing R was significant. Like Kevin, ‘West Country’ didn’t occur to me.
      We get so used to everything being tight and correct that a missing letter can become a big deal.
  2. PRESUME and EXECUTE crossing held me up a fair bit and too me to nearly 14 minutes, but this was nothing to do with stuff missing from clues, as I read it as ‘West Country’ anyway…
  3. FOI 6ac COP

    LOI 14dn PRESUME



    Another ARBORETUM at 1ac

  4. I am going for a walk around Westonbirt Arboretum later this morning. A lot of Arboretums recently. Wonder what the collective noun is? Didn’t notice the missing R.
      1. Actually it’s an Absence of Arboretums as you need to pre-book and turn up with a QR code … so I couldn’t visit and was turned away at the turnstile.
  5. Slow for me this morning held up by 14D and 20A as well as the long anagram at 10Ac whic took a while to fall.

    I was also a bit confused by West County and spent a while trying to think of Irish counties before realising that Exe would fit.

    But a good challenge on the whole, thanks Jack and Wurm.

    FOI Cop
    LOI Execute
    CoD Teddy Bear


  6. Ages spent on my last two on the way to a 17m solve. Can’t believe I couldn’t make the transition from ‘bust’ to BREAST even after thinking of Brest very early on. Also struggled to juggle the remaining letters to get to INDOCTRINATE. Didn’t notice ‘West Country’ really said ‘West County’ so wasted a bit of time mining local knowledge of Somerset’s rivers — surely too obscure — before moving on to Devon. Parsed PRESUME thanks to Dr Livingstone. Nice to see ‘lower’ meaning underneath for once!
  7. I never even noticed the missing “r” in 20A. But I was slightly thrown by the E on the end of 2D, until I twigged it was Before Common Era not Before Christ. 4:42.
  8. Struggled a bit to get the right answer anyway, having bunged in SWEATER from the “West Count(r)y” = “SW” and the “top” definition, thinking I’d sort out the “EATER” bit later…

    That meant the bottom right corner was a right pain and continued to be so even after I removed the sweater, EXECUTE, PRESUME and BEER, and for good measure, I just couldn’t see TEDDY BEAR from the anagrist either!

    One to forget for me!


    Edited at 2021-12-20 09:21 am (UTC)

  9. This was tough and much too tricksy for a QC. Didn’t enjoy at all. I imagine I will not be the only would-be solver to take too long to finish it. I don’t think it was just me being thick on a Monday morning but what do I know?
    I won’t dignify this puzzle with a detailed analysis. John M.

    Edited at 2021-12-20 11:33 am (UTC)

    1. I agree with everything you said! Got stuck on MILLIGRAM and in the end abandoned the whole thing after about 16 or 17 minutes. I’d got better things to do, like going shopping with my daughter 😊
  10. Stumped in the NW after 45 minutes by the ARCH/COLOGNE crossers. I had (r)ALLY for 1d and was thinking I was looking for a four letter city to store log to make some unknown term for a volcanic hill. Guess I might have got (m)ARCH had I thought of cone, because I have come across it as a meaning of cunning, but only on here, so it isn’t part of my usual vocabulary. Hopefully it will be now. Didn’t notice the missing r in 20a and gave it my COD. Originally I also put ‘sweater’ in thinking that the West Country was the SW but unsurprisingly I couldn’t think why “eater” could mean ‘runner with attractive’. Oh well, best get on. Thanks to Wurm and Jack.
  11. I started very slowly but once I got my brain into Wurm-mode things speeded up.
    LOI COLOGNE after 12:26. Did not spot the missing R and read as West Country.
    INDOCTRINATE needed all the checkers.
    Lots of good tricky clues. A puzzle which required a clear head.
    Hard to pick COD, maybe PRESUME.
  12. Taken to 2 minutes over target by the PRESUME EXECUTE pair, and by initially biffing BEARING for BALANCE, which didn’t work and took a while to sort out. Otherwise, I thought this was fair and reasonable, so have to disagree with Oldblighter’s assessment above. Thanks both.
  13. Completed in 38 minutes but did find some of the clues quite tricky. I did need some help from Chambers for some of the more obscure clues.
  14. ….but it won’t cure your affliction at reading what you want to read, rather than what’s printed. Hence I EXECUTED 20A without a second thought.

    This was quite tricky, but nothing caused me real trouble until the time came to disentangle my LOI — which I did in time to slip just inside my target

    TIME 4:50

  15. I found this tricky. I didn’t notice the missing R either. Held up by PRESUME, PROPER, MILLIGRAM, INDOCTRINATE and LOI, COLOGNE. 15:19. Thanks Wurm and Jack.
  16. 18:59, very slow with last two ONSLAUGHT and INDOCTRINATE. Problem was not seeing “coach” in there and looking for a word for “inappropriately”.

    TUM=corporation, add that to my list of abbreviations due for retirement.


    1. Perhaps TfTT should compile its own compendium of acceptable synonyms and submit it to Times management?


      Edited at 2021-12-20 02:33 pm (UTC)

    2. I wonder what the connection is between tum and corporation? Perhaps a silly question but I’m keen to improve my (rather slow) solving attempts.
  17. Our slowest finish in a long while — not helped by a lengthy interruption —so no time recorded. We just weren’t on Wurm’s wavelength at all today, there were 3 or 4 clues that really stumped us.

    FOI: COP
    COD: TEDDY BEAR and INDOCTRINATE was a super anagram.

    Thanks Jackkt and Wurm.

  18. Oh well, was confused by county. And though I pencilled in Presume I couldn’t see why this was “take it”. Oh, I see, Dr Livingstone.
    Could not parse ARBORETUM tho FOI.
    Also slow on ARCH , COLOGNE.
    Biffed it, but does ARCH mean cunning? Perhaps just in crossword-land, but not in my Oxford or Times dictionaries.
    Thanks all, esp Jack.

    Edited at 2021-12-20 12:27 pm (UTC)

    1. Cunning and arch are semantically related within ‘sly’ topic. In some cases one may use cunning instead an adjective arch, when it comes to topics like artful. Source: ‘Thesauraus Plus’ which more useful then mere dictionaries
  19. Another very difficult QC. I managed it in the end with some guesses and a couple of checkers. Thanks for the explanations! Didn’t notice the West County not Country in 20a.
  20. I have known easier starts to the week… This was definitely at the tricky end of the solving spectrum, so I decided to sit back and enjoy the ride, and there was certainly a lot to enjoy, with CoD Breast being my pick. In the end, I was stumped by the Presume/Execute pairing (the latter another gem, even with the missing letter) and needed a second stab and several alphabet trawls. An entertaining puzzle, but hardly a QC. Invariant
    1. I believe the QC is a somewhat misleading misnoma; it should be entitled ‘The Short Cryptic’.

      Edited at 2021-12-20 12:52 pm (UTC)

  21. So a five minute solve – plus change. ‘The Indian Summer of a Forsyte’ is the metaphorical title of the 1918 second volume of The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy. But the derivation is purely North American and did not catch on in Britain until the 1950s. My COD, WOD and Deed of the Day.

    Edited at 2021-12-20 12:48 pm (UTC)

  22. 30 mins bang on for what I thought was a tricky start to the week. I never noticed the missing “r” in 20ac either, but that aside I thought it was a great clue.

    I’ll probably get roasted for this, but is the UK really Britain? It’s the United Kingdom of Great Britain, one political and one geographical, or is it just taken as given?

    Liked 5dn “Milligram”, 2dn “Balance” and 11dn “Onslaught”.

    FOI — 6ac “Cop”
    LOI — 1dn “Arch” — annoying alphabet trawl
    COD — 20ac “Execute”

    Thanks as usual!

    1. It’s the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, of course. And many of us quick or slow solvers are British. The clue says “in UK” and so that makes it OK.
  23. Trying to fit exenice didn’t cut the mustard at 20a and I just wasn’t cute enough on several clues — Milligram, Presume, Breast, Balance and Cologne all unsolved.
    I knew it had to be Al or Alan but NHO BCE as times past.
    A tum? Well I’ve got one that is growing when I wished it wouldn’t but NHO as corporation.
    Oh well,
    Roll on tomorrow
    Thanks all
    John George
  24. Struggled with this one, especially with the PRESUME/EXECUTE and ARCH/COLOGNE crossings. Also found MILLIGRAM problematic. I had to go away and return to the fray later at which point PRESUME and EXECUTE fell. However I needed aids for MILLIGRAM and COLOGNE after which ARCH became obvious. Nothing unfair in the clueing and I clearly wasn’t on the wavelength, despite starting off fairly well.

    LOI – 1dn ARCH
    COD – 23ac TEDDY BEAR

  25. I have taken a couple of days off solving the QC but I wasn’t expecting such a lengthy Monday solve. Like Rotter, I biffed Bearing instead of BALANCE. Even with the correction I did wonder how to parse the final E as BCE was an unknown. Despite having all the checkers, I then took an age to see COLOGNE. My last two pushed me well over target to 16 mins. The culprits were EXECUTE and PRESUME. Tricky but fair.

    Edited at 2021-12-20 02:51 pm (UTC)

  26. Twenty-three minutes so getting beyond hard, really. I got 18 of these on first pass – but very slowly. Was completely stumped by execute/presume. My husband finally took the plunge and put them in, neither of us really knowing how either of them worked. So imagine my surprise to find that we had guessed these two right. Everything has already been noted above. Thanks for parsing them all, Jack, and for the puzzle, Wurm.

    I seem to have lost the option to “like” any comments, I can only link, reply or thread. Is it just me? There are some comments above that I would like to like, given the option.

    Edited at 2021-12-20 03:14 pm (UTC)

    1. Yes, there are some strange things going on at Live Journal regarding ‘response’ options. They change by the day at the moment. Hopefully they will soon settle down.

      Edited at 2021-12-20 03:22 pm (UTC)

    2. I have had a weird No Entry sign under everyone’s name and the date since the weekend! It suggests I should be reporting all of you for all sorts of internet crimes. Most disturbing.
  27. Short of sparkle today …
    … and plodded through this a bit for a 14 minute finish. Like many others, the SE corner was the last to fall, with both 14D Presume and LOI 20A Execute taking time (and not because of the missing R, which I simply didn’t spot). No problem with 2D Balance though, which went pretty much straight in — a sign of the times that we have BCE not BC in a Times crossword.

    Many thanks to Jack for the blog

  28. Slow going for me today with this typically chewy offering from Wurm. Took too long to unscramble INDOCTRINATE, not helped by assuming it would start INCON… Also struggled with COLOGNE, BALANCE, EXECUTE and PRESUME. Finished in 14.01
    Thanks to Jack
    1. Likewise, I was sure it was Incon at the beginning and -ate at the end, but that didn’t leave much to play with in the middle…
  29. I found ARBORETUM quickly, but couldn’t parse it until a half an hour later. Several other clues presented similar problems, but the most intractable were ONSLAUGHT, EXECUTE, COLOGNE and PRESUME (my LOI). Rather embarrasingly, my last two took a full 15 minutes of alphabet-trawling – and I never really did parse COLOGNE.

    In summary: 48 minutes for me. All fair and quite enjoyable, but definitely a tough challenge to start the week.

    Mrs Random experienced similar problems, especially with PRESUME, but she whizzed off to attend to the next thing on her to-do list before telling me her time.

    Many thanks to Wurm and jackkt (the blog was much needed today).

  30. Well there were many I didn’t see, I’m afraid, not good today. Brain stuck. Tum = corporation, Eat = worry, Exe = runner, Presume = take it, and others as well. Grateful for education from Wurm plus vital blog from Jackkt.

    Edited at 2021-12-20 05:24 pm (UTC)

  31. Slowed down by typing INDOCTRINATE too quickly, putting letters in the wrong order and struggling with TREATY and MILLIGRAM. Got there in the end.

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