Wednesday, 21 September 2016


Sequence appeared in the July 2016 edition of "1 Across" as crossword no. 1734 in Issue 304.

The clues were all of the "normal" type, so there were no messages being generated from the clues themselves.  Instead, solvers had to deduce the unclued lights and the sequence they represented.

These were the most recent constituencies of the last five ex-prime ministers in reverse chronological order:

David Cameron          WITNEY
Gordon Brown            KIRKCALDY and COWBENBEATH
Tony Blair                   SEDGEFIELD
John Major                  HUNTINGDON
Margaret Thatcher      FINCHLEY


Finally, solvers were required to highlight the the most recent addition of MAIDENHEAD (Theresa May), which was hidden on a diagonal in the grid.

Thursday, 1 September 2016

Cease Work


Published in The Magpie magazine in July 2016 (Issue 163) and assigned an "A" grade, the title is a cryptic representation of Cold Comfort Farm, the novel by Stella Gibbons.

The preamble states that the wordplay in all clues (except those leading to 7-letter answers) which spell out a quotation related to the unclued answers.  This would prove to be “SOMETHING NASTY IN THE WOODSHED”, a  well-known phrase from the book.  The animals of the farm, AIMLESS, FECKLESS, GRACELESS, POINTLESS (cows), VIPER (horse) and BIG BUSINESS (bull), provide the unclued lights.


Some solvers' comments:

I thoroughly enjoyed doing this but never really got the theme. Is it a weakness to be able to complete a crossword without knowing why? If maybe there had been an additional animal to highlight I'd had to have googled a bit more deeply. Lovely clues though. Thank you Eclogue.
Pretty gentle exercise. Nearly didn't need pub Googlers but .ECKLESS couldn't be guessed with any confidence. Rather two many entries with zero unches.
A quick start to the month.
Cold Comfort Farm is not a book I have read. On asking the boss if it was worth reading the rapid response was a quite vehement NO. 
Had to resort to Google for this one. Not that familiar with the theme, so nice and educational. Grade about right. Nice puzzle.
Thanks for improving my knowledge of Eng Lit. Fortunately I Googled the quotation and hence changed RECKLESS to FECKLESS.
Nicely constructed puzzle. The quotation from the clues gave me the hint I need to fill in the unclued entries which I'd forgotten.
I did spend a bit of time assuming there was something significant to the 7 digits lights. Why? I don't know. 
The biggest penny drop was figuring out the title, something I can never normally do. And I never knew from where The Divine Comedy's Something For The Weekend got its inspiration, so thanks for that Eclogue! A lot packed into an 11x11 grid and some good cluing.
A gentle start to the magazine. I didn't rush so it probably took me 30-40 minutes. The quotation appeared pretty quickly. I did recognise it but had to rely on "Mr. Google' to recall all the unclued entries. Fun.