The Charity Christmas Puzzle, set by Gordon Gray to raise money for charity, since 1991.
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Christmas Puzzle 2015

Christmas PuzzleThis year's annual Charity Christmas Puzzle has now been posted, and is available to download.

This, the 25th annual Puzzle that Gordon Gray has set, has a theme designed to help completion and will appeal to people who enjoy doing Crossword puzzles, such as in the Daily Telegraph (though it is not a Crossword puzzle). Puzzlers have plenty of time to find the answers and Puzzles should be returned, with donation, by 24 January 2016.

Gordon has posted Puzzles to those on distribution list, so these should be received in the next few days. Anyone else who would like a copy of the Puzzle can access it from the web at Alternatively puzzles can be collected from St Mary's Eaton Bray.

All the money you donate, except for the prize-money, will go to charity.

Any corrections will be posted to the blog and to the corrections page.

December 8, 2015 | Permalink | Comment

Reader Comments

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December 8, 2015, Gordon Gray says:

In Q32 please read 'sleight', not 'slight'

December 8, 2015, roger robinson says:

Could you please confirm the number of blanks in the first part of clue 9. I have a solution that seems to fit all the clue/theme elements except for being the wrong length.

December 9, 2015, Andy Cole says:

All answers appear to have the correct number of spaces. 28c appears to require a stretch too far between clue and answer - unless of course my answer is wrong.

December 11, 2015, Liz Price says:

28c is absolutely fine, as is 9a.

December 11, 2015, Andy Cole says:

I can't agree about 28c - I still think it's dodgy. 38c appears to be just plain wrong.

December 11, 2015, Keith A. Simmonds says:

28 c seems ok to me! It's the gap between "Ho-hum" and "That's annoying" that is giving trouble...

December 11, 2015, Andy Cole says:

I now believe that, to be correct, 1a has one dash too many. I cannot agree about 28c. The answer is obvious but the clue is deficient.

December 11, 2015, Andy Cole says:

The dichotomy presented by 5b is either unfair or wrong.

December 11, 2015, Andy Cole says:

No spoiler intended - beware the antecedent bees.

December 12, 2015, Andy Cole says:

Again without spoiler - beware the 'A's - "unchambered" noun.

December 12, 2015, Di Platts says:

Unless I'm wrong, I don't agree with any of Andy Cole's comments, except for 5b, which I don't understand (perhaps I will when I get the answer)

December 12, 2015, Di Platts says:

I've finally cracked 5b, and can see no dichotomy problems.

December 12, 2015, Di Platts says:

Has anyone else got 2 equally valid answers for 40b?

December 12, 2015, Andy Cole says:

I must stop checking - I've now got two equally possible answers for 26c and for 40b. I am certain there is an error in 38c.

December 13, 2015, Gordon Gray says:

I have read the correspondence from the last two days with interest and feel I should make two observations: 1. I have been inconsistent with use of tenses for thematic answers - 8 used past tense, 2 use present tense. 2. The horse that I defined as 'unbeaten' lost to Sassafras in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe

December 15, 2015, Pam G says:

There's usually a comment by now on what a pleasure it is to receive this year's challenge and what a brilliant puzzle it's turning out to be... so I'm correcting that omission while making no other comment on the clues or answers!

December 15, 2015, Ian Hilton says:

Well said Pam G. Congratulations again Gordon. Have I miscounted the number of numerical references to thematic answers in the introduction. If 8 used past tense and 2 the present, what tense is the 11th? One too many 1s perhaps.

December 16, 2015, Dot R says:

As usual BRILLIANT. Loving the search and brain activity. Thanks

December 19, 2015, Maureen W says:

Having completed all the answers I finally worked out what all the numbers meant in the theme. This removed the uncertainty about some of my answers. Very devious! Excellent puzzle as usual.

December 20, 2015, Rose Meech says:

I would like to echo Pam G's comment - another brilliant puzzle which I think we've almost cracked. But I'm slightly uncertain about 2a and 5b and 20b has totally defeated me. It became much easier after we had worked out what the numbers meant.

December 30, 2015, Bill & Jill says:

Thanks Gordon for some wonderful entertainment. One of your best puzzles!

January 3, 2016, Yvette says:

I have enjoyed the puzzle immensely as always but am really strugglling with the starter letters even though I have an answer for everything. I do a admit though that I have a few guesses. 2a, 20c and 40b are really giving me trouble.

January 3, 2016, Jos says:

Thoroughly enjoyed this, although think that I've just made up answers to 5b and 20b, and am less than sure about others. Took me ages to get the starting letters, but huge sense of achievement when I did! Thank you so much.

January 4, 2016, Sandra says:

Another wonderfully entertaining puzzle. I may well have made some errors, I usually do, but I have managed to find answers that at least I think fit all of the clues.....I even think I've spotted the homonyms, which is not easy for a Scot. (Divided by a common language.) Thanks again for cheering up my Christmas and New Year break through all this wretched weather. Happy New Year to all and good luck!

January 4, 2016, Debbie says:

I'm worried after reading this - 38a is causing me problems but nobody else has mentioned this! I know all the starting letters and the only word I can find that fits has nothing to do with the clue.

January 6, 2016, Andrea says:

As usual this has been a fine displacement activity. I couldn't have got near it without help from my sister who explained what the numbers were all about. What kind of a twisted brain can invent this sort of stuff? Thanks and congratulations, Gordon!

January 19, 2016, Graham says:

Since I cannot get starting letters correct as I did not realise what the numbers meant until a friend explained. Even then that was not much help. Expect to be bottom of the class as usual.

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