3D Crossword Solution – November 2021

Nov 2021 puzzle page

Clues by Pasquale and Grid by Bozzy

Theme: New towns

The winner of the November puzzle is Emma Wisher of Colchester.

Review of the November 2021 3D crossword

We are told that this puzzle marks a 75th anniversary. Eight asterisked clues lack a definition; one of their solutions is the pioneer being celebrated, whilst the other seven are some of its followers. An anagram of the highlighted cells gives the theme (3,5), which solvers should submit with their entry, along with the name of the original pioneer.

Not a lot to go on there. The background photograph features a bridge which may be significant but I don’t recognise it. The picture clue actually gives the theme. George W Bush is instantly recognisable but I’m not sure about the severe looking cove framing him, but I note that there are two of him and that may indicate a plural.

Excellent cluing, as always from Pasquale, with difficulty towards the more straightforward end of his spectrum. Of course, to winkle out the theme, we’re after the asterisked clues without definitions. The first one that I get is clue 14 with an anagram that after a tussle yields MILTON KEYNES. With all the letters in place I’ve been struggling with clue 8, having got MK, BRACKNELL becomes obvious. Now they’re all falling into place with nice clue 9 for CORBY.

New Towns and the severe looking cove is clearly Isaac Newton with George’s W inserted. Yes the yellow squares have all the right letters and the theme is formally confirmed. The pioneer of these new towns was STEVENAGE.

I smiled a little whilst reading your comments when HE identified the Newtons as Olivia Newton-John. I’m not sure that she would be flattered by the comparison. And the background picture showed, of course, the Menai Straits bridge designed by Thomas Telford.

A delightful crossword with an unusual theme created by BOZZY who, for those who do not know, is our own Nora Boswell. Thank you Nora and of course the Don.

Grid solution

November 2021 grid solution

Visual clue

George W (“Dubya”) Bush is flanked by Sir Isaac NEWTONS, giving:


Visual clue for NEW TOWNS
Drawing by Frank Paul

Clues and explanations

Thematic solutions are indicated with an asterisk.

DaySolutionDirection, Clue, CountExplanation
1AGENT22aw Rep a scoundrel? Quite the opposite (5)A GENT
2ALAMO9to Mission taking a hit, finishing with nothing (5)A LAM (hit) O
3AMBER6d Warning to motorist in Camberwell (5)hidden in cAMBERwell
4AMNION9d,26to Protection for the unborn in awful mansion not special (6)anag. of MANSION less S (special)
5BACON8to What’s brought home by the successful painter? (5)double definition (Bring home the bacon and Sir Francis Bacon)
6BASED8d What’s built around home counties is substandard (5)SE (southeast/home counties) in BAD
7BRACKEN8ac Mac’s inner room contains framework for plant (7)RACK (framework) in BEN (Scottish word for inner room)
8BRACKNELL*8ac-5,10d *Runs into second little girl? (9)(R in BACK) + NELL
9CORBY*5d *Cor blimey – the tree’s gone! (5)COR B(lime)Y
10COWRIE3ba-2,2d Shell being fired, I cower (6)anag. of (ICOWER)
11CRAWLEY*5ac *Slow movement? Then you must reverse (7)CRAWL + YE, rev.
12EMAIL21aw Form of communication a mile off (5)anag. of AMILE
13ENTRY25up Guard heading away – from here? (5)(s)ENTRY
14ETHAN21up Man receiving sincere thanks? The reverse (5)hidden: reverse clue to get sincerE THANks receiving man
15HOISE14aw Lift old garden implement? One’s to be locked away (5)1’s in HOE
16KYLIN10to Mythical creature in slinky lingerie (5)hidden in slinKY LINgerie
17LAIKA7d Audibly admire a type of dog (5)Homophone of “like a”
18MILTON KEYNES*17ac,18aw,19ba *Monkeys let in accidentally (6,6)anag. of MONKEYSLETIN
19NONET11d Piece of music I found in holy books (5)ONE (I) in NT (New Testament)
20NO-NOS1d Failures of son getting on, suffering setback (2-3)SON + ON, all rev. (set back)
21NORMS12aw Little man’s standards (5)double definition
22NORTHAMPTON*12ac,15aw *Former PM, a politician leading people of fashion (11)(18th century Prime Minister, Frederick) NORTH + A MP + TON
23RAYON4aw Artist requires that material (5)RA (Royal Academy of Arts) + YON
24RIB16ac Guy – what one gave for a wife! (3)double definition, ref. Adam
25ROBIN13aw Bird to steal from home (5)ROB + IN
26RUMBA4d Dance and drink with sailor turning up (5)RUM + AB rev.
27RUNCORN*4b *Managed to get something harvested (7)RUN + CORN
28RYE24to Grass somewhere in East Sussex (3)double definition
29SAYID20aw Muslim to declare identity (5)SAY + ID
30STEVENAGE*20ac,22aw-3 *Like two occupying platform (9)EVEN in STAGE
31TELFORD*27ba *Car’s foremost requirement is phone (7)TEL. + FORD
32YARDAGE23ac For example, a vehicle reversing makes use of enclosed area (7)EG A DRAY, all rev.
Easter EggsNEW TOWNSHighlighted cells – theme (3,5)
STEVENAGEName of the original pioneer

Solvers’ comments

I know a little of this movement to construct the new towns because I have encountered MILTON KEYNES in crosswords in The Guardian. This was a tough puzzle for me though as I had to do a lot of “solve and check” to get the solutions that were the place names. Not complaining, just saying that it’s part and parcel of this hobby for international solvers undertaking British puzzles to have to do some online reseach. Many thanks to Pasquale and Bozzy for what ended up beign an interesting learnign experience. [JA]

A pleasure to solve, not least because I live just outside another new town, Harlow, and last year had cause to research the New Towns movement. So, a bit of a head start, once I had worked out a couple of the * clues. [PA]

Easier than usual but much fairer fare from Ximenean Pasquale! Many thanks. [PC]

Evergreen’s the theme, cryptically; could fall somewhere this month (5,4) [JC]

This must be one of the quickest puzzles to solve although I.m not impressed with the personification of the theme! [RC]

Interesting theme – always like finding out about something that I didn’t know much about, but the solving was set at a very basic level, no real challenge which was a shame [JC]

A good chunk of education re new towns, thanks to the Don. [SC]

Fun as ever…. and educational. [RE]

Runcorn and Corby were the way in and after that the asterisked clues went in nicely. After a good start early in the year we have had a few DNF months so it was satisfying to at least be able to submit something this time. Thanks again..can’t believe we are nearly at the end of 2021. Thanks for the opportunity to update the EasterEgg..not Ebenezer Howard! [SH]

Good fun — but I kooked in vain for a concrete cow pasted into the photograph. [TH]

Great picture clue, and satisfying solving. [J&JH]

A nice workout with an interestingly different theme. We hadn’t realised that Northampton was a New Town. It also took a while for the penny to drop about the relevance of the picture of the Menai Suspension Bridge. Thanks for this! [N&SI]

I spotted Newton but it still took some time and a couple of answers to work out the theme. 27 should read “Manage”. I had to wait for the Hints & Tips before getting the “pioneer” – an unusual use of the word, not attested by Chambers. [MJ]

Enjoyable, not too difficult, theme easily figured out 😀 [MN]

Fairly straightforward once theme realised with only a couple of uncommon words. The only thing that confused me was thinking the original pioneer looked for might be a person! Well clued. [JP]

Interesting theme, especially since I live in one of the new towns clued, ie Bracknell! The penny didn’t drop for the picture clue until I’d already sussed the theme, and I’m still a bit unsure about it. Presumably two Newtons, with a ‘Dubya’ in between them? Thanks for an entertaining puzzle. [RS]

Another enjoyable puzzle with a great theme. A little slice of modern British history. And another new (albeit archaic) word for us. What’s not to like? [CW]

A very satisfying puzzle to solve, with a generous helping of thematic names to discover. The added bonus was to be reminded that some of these places are indeed ‘new towns’. Thanks to Pasquale and Bozzy. [AB]

Thanks for an easy one [AM]

Interesting but a bit easy! – day 18 a long answer with an easy clue which also revealed the theme, so it was really just a question of filling in the other thematic answers and then plugging the gaps. [EF]

A shame Ebenezer Howard wasn’t recognised as the original pioneer… nice lightbulb moment when we spotted the theme. A pleasing puzzle. [RS]

I found this one quite a quick solve: first one in for me was CORBY (lovely clue) and, having that, the year 1946 then rang a bell. Well done Bozzy for getting so many in, and avoiding the worst of them. Why do these brilliant architects not realise what white concrete looks like after ten years of British weather? My favourite clue was NONET: not difficult perhaps, but very neat. [AC]

Nice to see my home town, Telford, get a mention! [JM]

An interesting topic! [SF]

I had previously lived in one of the new towns so this was a big help as I quickly spotted it. The rest fell into place quite quickly. [MP]

Clearly on the right wavelength for this puzzle as my quickest solve of the year! New words kylin and hoise and only needed to check the former of those. Recognised Newton drawing but could not crack why the man in the middle of the picture gave a w! [DM]

Possibly the quickest D Pasquale crossword I’ve ever done, nonetheless interesting. The theme eluded me for a while. [ET]

Pretty straightforward and solving the anagram helped me solve my last clue on day 15. [PD]

Very gentle – solved on a couple of passes, so the nerves I felt on seeing ‘Pasquale’ were unfounded. Nothing wrong with a gentle puzzle, though, and I like Frank’s drawing. [HS]

Easier than some but still satisfying [EW]

Good fun as I was in the loop! [AG]

A very satisfying and enjoyable puzzle with – for me – a much more familiar theme than last month’s! I thought all the asterisked clues in particular were very clever. [JB]

Born and spent formative years in Basildon, so felt like a home puzzle for me! [MD]

Great puzzle – lovely idea. I was not aware there were so many. Thanks to all. [BS]

An interesting bit of history – we all know about Milton Keynes, but I hadn’t realised that Stevenage came first in 1946 The puzzle was not too taxing this time in good Pasquale style – I have a feeling that next month will be more challenging from the dreaded Enigmatist! I was a bit mystified by the picture of the Menai Bridge which did not seem to have any connection, until I realised who was the designer of it… [SB]

The date put me on the right track straight away, though I was then disappointed when I looked for Harlow, and there are a couple I hadn’t thought of as new towns. (Also, I don’t know who in Frank Paul’s drawing is meant to give the ‘w’ between the Newtons) So it was a fun solve, with no significant problems – I was impressed Bozzy and Pasquale had fitted in so much thematic material and only using one obscure word (on the 15th). I have assumed that ‘original’ pioneer means that we need to go back to Howard, rather then Abercrombie. [PM]

We loved this one, especially as we’d tried to guess the theme early on and got it completely wrong (nothing to do with suspension bridges, apparently). The moment that Frank Paul’s drawing became incredibly obvious was particularly great! [AH]

Worked well. Pleased to see so few snakes (apart from some of the New Towns). I found this easier than most of the previous ones this year (which is a Good Thing !). No issues with any of the clues (unusually for me !), and enough of them were challenging. I think the drawing shows George W Bush in between two Olivia Newton-Johns, thus W inside NEWTONS … ? Haven’t gone to t’Internet to see what O N-J looks like (or looked like). I don’t see the relevance of the background picture, which I think is the Menai Straits Bridge. Bangor wasn’t a New Town. [HE]

An interesting and educational theme! As someone who spent time growing up in New Ash Green (a ‘new village’ of the 60s/70s) in Kent, this resonated with me. [MC]

Learned a bit of UK history as well as a word I should but did not know (kylin), many thanks. My favorite anagram was Day 18. And Mr. Paul, your Newton reminds me more of the young Robert Plant, but I finally got the joke! [JS]

My master enjoyed this one. Did it about 1.00 in the morning. He is a night owl. [RG]

Really enjoyed this! Not hard, but fun and a pleasant, light-hearted theme. Even the picture clue helped, that and the anagram for MK, where I lived briefly many years ago. I’ve taken a flier on TELFORD as the ‘pioneer’ based just on the photo so no resorting to Wikipedia which is a bonus. Hmm, got the ‘wrong answer’ message and had to go to Wikipedia after all to find Stevenage is ‘the one’. [ES]

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