⏴ Slip No. 1013 View the clue list Slip No. 1021 ⏵



1.  Dr E. Young: One can help make cup brilliant: might old cap ask chaps to open out? (pear main, i.e. fruit cup; anag.; ref. R.U. World Cup Final, R. Uttley England coach).

2.  D. F. Manley: Switzerland’s No. 1 bod’s genius making headpiece apple pulp finally – an aimer with a quiver (S chap’s ka; p + anag.; ref. W. Tell).

3.  R. J. Hooper: It’s kind of pop to wrap gents’ garb for head teacher’s present, say couple we hear with mum in market (chaps in ska; ‘pair’ ma in; ‘an apple for the teacher’).


J. Abernethy: After brilliant game for Worcester, Guy excitedly asks about cap (pear + main3; chap in anag.; ref. Ian Botham, nicknamed Guy (the Gorilla)).

M. J. Balfour: ‘A fruit, conking Newton’s head, am I?’ asks queer guy in camp cap (pear + anag.; chap in anag.).

M. Barley: What might grow red and swollen? Part of prop’s ear might, as packs play without hard head-protection (p + ear main; H in anag.).

E. A. Beaulah: Worcester perhaps are worried (by the end of Botham) and in trouble: double – following a second man’s getting a cap abroad (anag. + m in pain; s chap’s + ka; ref. Worcestershire losing Botham and Moody).

Mrs K. Bissett: Kind of apple such as William might shove into cap has pack initially scrumped? (pear main; anag. incl. s; ref. Just W. stories).

N. C. Dexter: Military cap Pole has issued with pack often gets blown off in the wind: take Pole’s cap a degree in round ear (S + anag.; ear in P MA in).

R. A. England: Maybe part of dessert at high table meal – fruit might cap it, detaining fellows along with a spot of kirsch (pear main; chaps k in SA).

R. R. Greenfield: After training, airman (ground) could be constituent of cordon, a cover for troopers emerging from cracks in rock (PE + anag.; chaps in ska; cordon = fruit tree).

J. F. Grimshaw: His taking crack and black music – which soldier puts on at top power – gets a marine disciplined (something like quarantine?) (’s chap ska; P + anag.; see quarrender).

P. F. Henderson: Head of Army invested in a great Apple computer, initially taking chances with amount of memory in it, for part of military outfit (A in per main; c + haps + K in SA).

A. Lawrie: School sap dressed to serve as of old in uniform cap, trim hair, we hear, is what may please teacher (sch. + anag. + ka2; ‘pare mane’).

R. K. Lumsdon: Plot in MP area – perhaps agent for jelly guy caught with explosive asks for topping (anag.; chap in anag.).

P. W. Marlow: In area PM represented, ‘juicy variety’ Sun requires has pack scrambling for top coverage for Major? (anag.; S + anag.; ref. John M.).

H. W. Massingham: Drill airman order? One with a pip or two has packs checked out for military detail? (PE + anag.; anag.).

T. J. Moorey: Right away repair-man stressed Apple PC has faults: must ask what’s topping service polls (anag. less r; anag. + anag.; must4 = frenzied).

C. J. Morse: Man spattered with a ripe item from fruit-stall asks wryly about local customer in cap (anag.; chap in anag.).

R. J. Palmer: Another variety from Jonathan does mean pair fellow’s engaged in solving’s kept ambiguous initially – one must go on top (anag.; chap’s in s, k a; ref. varieties of apple, R & L grid).

A. J. Shields: Pack leader’s attention might bear fruit as chaps rally round Kirkpatrick to secure a cap (p ear main; K in anag.; ref. Ian K., former NZ rugby player).

R. C. Teuton: Brilliant Botham’s last one in for Worcester? Guy’s displaying a touch of sheer genius without protective headgear (pear m a in; chap’s in s ka).

A. J. Wardrop: Restyled shako (not round) caps what’s worn by cavalry general, almost the finest at the front, in Worcester perhaps (anag. less O; pear(l) + main).


D. Ashcroft, F. D. H. Atkinson, M. J. Barker, R. C. Bell, J. R. Beresford, Mrs A. R. Bradford, B. W. Brook, E. J. Burge, B. Burton, C. J. & M. P. Butler, E. Chalkley, C. A. Clarke, G. H. Clarke, M. Coates, D. J. Dare-Plumpton, R. Dean, C. M. Edmunds, P. S. Elliott, L. E. Ellis, C. J. Feetenby, Dr I. S. Fletcher, B. Franco, H. Freeman, F. D. Gardiner, Mrs A. Havard, V. G. Henderson, A. W. Hill, A. Hodgson, G. Johnstone, M. D. Jones, F. P. N. Lake, C. W. Laxton, J. W. Leonard, J. C. Leyland, J. D. Lockett, B. MacReamoinn, L. K. Maltby, H. S. Mason, R. S. Morse, R. F. Naish, G. S. Parsons, D. Pendrey, R. Phillips, D. Price Jones, A. G. Ray, W. S. Reid, H. L. Rhodes, D. R. Robinson, T. E. Sanders, W. J. M. Scotland, A. D. Scott, W. K. M. Slimmings, A. St Quintin, R. I. Sutherland, A. Thomas, R. A. Wells, R. J. Whale, G. H. Willett, D. Williamson, W. Woodruff.

340 entries, no mistakes. No real problems in the solving, it seems, especially when BETWEEN-MAID was quickly tumbled to. One seasoned campaigner felt that it would have been fairer to solvers if I’d designed the diagram to allow more connection between the upper and lower ‘storey’. This would have been easy enough to do and would have allowed for some longer down words, but I was in effect simply sticking to the time-honoured ‘Right and Left’ formula in which the non-double word provides the sole link between the two parts of the puzzle. The only difference is that with an up-and-down arrangement it is possible to start entering solutions when cross-checking links have been established without having solved the central word, whereas in the Ximenean ‘Right and Left’ each half of the grid is identical, and solving the single clue is essential in determining right from left. I have to admit that it was the idea of using BETWEEN-MAID that determined the shape and title of the puzzle, not the other way round. Tradition seems to require that the central word – and its clue – should be appropriate to the overall theme. I doubt I’ll find as good a one for another ‘Upstairs, Downstairs’, but who knows?
SCHAPSKA and PEARMAIN were an ill-matched couple. As usual there were a few comments along the lines of ‘You left the really awful pair to us’, but, also as usual, I chose the clue-words before embarking on the rest and my choice was based on the general impression that they looked interesting and offered possibilities. Semantically of course they’re oceans part, and herein lies part of the special challenge of writing double clues: finding and sustaining a verbal link which produces a modicum of sense and (preferably) disguises the point at which the two clues meet. The strain clearly told this month, even on many of the more practised competitors, and I had to reject quite a lot of clues simply on the grounds of implausibility, however sound they may have been cryptically. And even among those mentioned above there were some fairly weak definitions, especially for SCHAPSKA. Given the toughness of the task I was perhaps more lenient in this area than I might normally be.
No time for more this month, except to say that AZ 1000 ties are now in production (but won’t, I’m afraid, be ready for Christmas). It’s not too late to place an order – even a tentative one – by writing to me enclosing an s.a.e. for further info (e.g. exact price and delivery details). The tentative price is still £6 per tie, to be fixed when the quantity manufactured is finalized.


The Azed Cup

R. C. Teuton wins First Prize in competition 2532.

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Narrow chimney top (and a fat belly!) can lead to Santa getting caught out

This year’s honours table

The current Azed competition closes on Saturday 16th January

Latest  AZED  No. 2,535  10th Jan

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From the archive

‘Silly-billy’ orders cut in proceeds from North Sea (7)

Second prize winner by F. R. Palmer in competition 332