On day 1 Howard Stableford revealed the treasure was not in the square that contained the fire escape. Answer = A2
On day 2 Simon Bates said the treasure was not in the square that shared its grid reference with the name of a single by the Pet Shop Boys. Answer = Before (a top 10 single in 1996) = B4
Des Lynam provided the clue on day 3, disclosing that the treasure was not in the square whose grid reference shares its name with a prestigious sporting event that used to be on the BBC, was televised for a few years by ITV, but is now back on the Beeb. Answer = Formula 1 = F1
On day 4 Little and Large explained the treasure was not in the square just to the left of the ornate sculpture in the middle of Television Centre’s circular courtyard. Answer = E4
An entry from the diary of Kenneth Williams supplied the clue on day 5, revealing that the treasure was not in the square just to the left of the stairwell by the doors at the far end of the first floor of TV Centre. Answer = G3
On day 6 it was disclosed that the treasure was not to be found in the square that shares its grid reference with the first half of the postcode belonging to the London borough of the Big Breakfast house. Answer = Bow = E3
Day 7 presented the most complex clue so far. The treasure was not in the square that shared a grid reference with the episode in the second series of A Bit of Fry and Laurie that featured a guest appearance from Paul Eddington. For example, if it appeared in the first show of the second series (which it didn’t), the square to cross off the map would be A2 (A= first episode, 2 = second series). Answer = Paul Eddington appeared in the fifth episode of series two = E2
The clue for day 8 was rather more straightforward: the treasure was not in the square that had a clock in it. Answer = H3
On day 9 it was disclosed that the treasure was not in the square whose grid reference could be found by taking the first letter of the surname of Bruce Forsyth’s female assistant during his return stint on the Generation Game, and coupling that with the number of times Brucie has left ITV to work for the BBC. Answer = Rosemary Ford + three times = F3
To get the grid reference for day 10‘s square, it was necessary to take the first letter of the only show Lenny Henry has done that has an exclamation mark in the title, and add that to the number of the Style Council album for which Lenny contributed spoken word vocals. Answer = Chef! + number three (Our Favourite Shop, the third Style Council album, released in 1985) = C3
Day 12 involved an encounter with Blue Peter and progressive rock. To come up with the correct grid reference to cross off the map, it was necessary to take the first letter of the village that is the location of Simon Groom’s farm, and couple that with the number of albums (of original material) Mike Oldfield has released under the title Tubular Bells. Answer = Dethick + three original albums = D3
On day 13 it was revealed that the treasure wasn’t hidden in the square in which Roy Castle and a small girl exchanged pleasantries while doing a bit of toe-tapping, before joining what seemed at the time like a million other clog-sporting clientele to perform the world’s largest tap dance. Answer = F4
On day 14 Michael Aspel disclosed the treasure was not to be found in the square with the word TELEVISION in it. Answer = A3
Day 15 involved identifying the year in which an episode of Cheggers Plays Pop was broadcast, using the top 10 chart displayed in a photograph of Keith Chegwin. It was then necessary to add up the individual digits of that year to get a two digit answer, and finally combine the first digit of that answer with the first letter of the item Cheggers used to present on The Big Breakfast, to give you the grid reference. Answer = 1978 = 1+9+7+8 = 25 = 2 + Down Your Doorstep = D2
The clue for day 16 was somewhat more simpler: the grid reference was the second half of the name of the “youth” “strand” of themed programmes invented by Janet Street Porter for BBC2 in the late 80s and early 90s. Answer = DEF II = F2
Day 17 brought with it a picture of one of Sir Clive Sinclair’s machines, whose model number was the same as the grid reference to cross off the map. Answer = Sinclair C4 = C4
On day 18 Frank Muir revealed the treasure was not to be found in the square with the word CENTRE in it. Answer = B3
Day 19‘s clue was themed around All Creatures Great and Small. To get the grid reference it was necessary to take the first letter of the surname of Christopher Timothy’s character, and couple that with the number of different actresses who played his wife. Answer = James Herriot + two = H2
The grid reference for day 20 was the postcode for the London borough in which Des O’Connor was born. Answer = Stepney = E1
On day 21 it was disclosed the treasure was not to be found in the square that shares its name with the most ubiquitous size of paper in the whole world. Answer = A4
The grid reference for day 22 came from taking the first letter of Cliff Richard’s real name and coupling that with the number of points by which he lost the 1968 Eurovision Song Contest. Answer = Harry Webb + one = H1
The square to cross off on day 23 shared its name with an American stealth bomber, a postcode area in central Birmingham, Riboflavin, an international standard paper size measuring 500mm x 707mm, a dye also known as dyesol, and the IATA airline designator code for Belavia Belarusian Airlines. Answer = B2
To get the grid reference of the square to cross off on day 24, it was necessary to take the first letter of the name of the brass band whose version of The Floral Dance Terry Wogan turned into a top 21 hit, and couple that with the number of times Wogan has actually presented (as opposed to commentated on) coverage of the Eurovision Song Contest. Answer = Brighouse & Rastrick Brass Band + one = B1
On day 25, it was necessary to take the first letter of the second word of the title of the motoring magazine Angela Rippon presented for a while, and add that to number of the BBC channel which still broadcasts that same programme today. Answer = Top Gear + BBC2 = G2
The square to cross off on day 26 shared its name with the runners-up of the 2004 series of The X Factor. Answer = G4
Gary Wilmot was the theme of day 27‘s clue. The row of the square was the one mentioned at the end of the title of Wilmot’s mid-80s BBC children’s gameshow in which kids engaged in a lot of silly bother for no reason. The column of the square was the first letter of the impressionist showcase to which Gary and friends subjected viewers of ITV, also (blimey, he was busy) in the mid-80s. Answer = So You Want To Be Top = top row + Copy Cats = C1
Robin Day was the person to see to day 28‘s clue. Answer = C2
Clue 29 was the second half of the chemical formula for hydrazine. Answer = N2H4 = H4
Clue 30 was a combination of the first letter of the surname of the man to whom Bill Cotton “made an offer I knew you couldn’t refuse” in 1984, plus the number of the channel that same man was appointed to run when he joined the BBC. Answer = Michael Grade + BBC1 = G1
Clue 31 was a combination of the first letter of the surname of the man who devised the original Puzzle Trail programme, and the number of Puzzle Trail series hosted by Tommy Boyd. Answer = Clive Doig + one = D1
Which left you with the square that contained the treasure: D4.
Well done to David Marr of Glasgow (the first to send in the correct answer) and to Rob Jones of Croydon (the winner selected at random from the other correct answers), both of whom will be receiving a slew of TV Cream-related goodies and publications.
Thanks to everyone who took part, whether you sent in an answer or not.
That just leaves one thing: the identity of the treasure itself. What was it that David and Rob successfully discovered at the end of the trail in D4?
Well, it’s right there on the map. It’s that old-fashioned delivery van at the end of that row of parking spaces, next to which two gentlemen (Roy Castle and Kenneth Williams, or possibly Little and Large) are passing the time of day, and which can now be returned to its rightful place in a sketch for The Two Ronnies involving a man who says the name of a vegetable each time another man is about to say something rude. Hurrah!