This puzzle was originally published Friday, May 29, 2009 in The Daily Telegraph
Today we have a puzzle that is not overly difficult, but one with lots of clever wordplay.
Some possibly unfamiliar abbreviations, people, places, words and expressions used in today's puzzle
bun - (noun, defn. 1b) Brit. a small round cake
Billy Bunter - seemingly well-known character in British fiction
Old Sarum - the site of the earliest settlement of Salisbury, England
rum - Brit. odd, peculiar
Jack Straw - British Labour Politician, holds the offices of Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
Libellule's review of today's puzzle may be found at Big Dave's Telegraph Crossword Blog [DT 25941].
Commentary on Today's Puzzle
19d Cake time at school unending for him! (6)
Not being familiar with the character, Billy Bunter, much of the wordplay in this rather clever clue initially went right over my head. This is a charade type clue where "cake" is BUN (in Britain, a bun can be either a cake or a roll; in North America, I am only familiar with it as a roll) and "time at school unending" is "TER" (TERM without its final letter). Billy BUNTER is a fictional character who has seemingly been a student at Greyfriars School (in novels, comic strips, stage plays, and on television) since his creation in 1908. Thus, it would seem, time at school is truly unending for him.
By the way, I originally thought "bunter" must be either a baseball or cricket reference. I was unable to find any source mentioning bunting in cricket, and I was not at all confident that one would find a baseball reference in a DT puzzle. Libellule's review set me on the correct path to understanding the wordplay.
Signing off for today - Falcon
NTSPP – 172
2 hours ago