Section A

  1. If you can’t beat them, join them.
  2. To hit the jackpot
  3. To jump on the bandwagon
  4. Jack of all trades
  5. The Day of the Jackal
  6. To jump the gun
  7. Jobs for the boys
  8. To shake like a jelly
  9. I’ll be the judge of that!
  10. Before you can say “Jack Robinson”


Section B

  1. I’ve got a lovely bunch of coconuts. Some people had “bar of chocolate” which fits, but I think this merely creates an ordinary sentence rather than a saying, quotation, song title etc.
  2. On the gravy train
  3. It’s not my cup of tea
  4. Life isn’t all beer and skittles
  5. Pie in the sky
  6. Cider with Rosie. Some people had the names of dishes such as “curry with rice” which I was at first inclined to disallow. However, having included a menu item as the answer to 7. I felt, on balance, that I would have to allow them
  7. A full English breakfast
  8. To save one’s bacon
  9. Half a loaf is better than none
  10. Couldn’t knock the skin off a rice pudding. I thought this might be too obscure but virtually everybody got it.


Section C

  1. Never (or not) in a month of Sundays
  2. Just a minute
  3. Time and tide wait for no man
  4. No time like the present
  5. There’s one born every minute
  6. Procrastination is the thief of time. I was puzzled at the number of seemingly incorrect entries which had “punctuality” for “procrastination”. When this happens it usually shows that I have missed a possible alternative answer and so it proved: Oscar Wilde decided to show how clever he was by substituting “punctuality” for “procrastination” and is now in the quotations book for having done so. So I’m obliged to allow both versions.
  7. Time gentlemen please!
  8. Happy Days are Here Again. A rather dated song so perhaps not surprisingly quite a few people didn’t get it and tried instead “High days and holidays again”. I accept “High days and holidays” as a fairly common expression but I think it ceases to be one if you add the word “again” so my view is that this is not a correct answer.
  9. A stitch in time saves nine
  10. ..”This was their finest hour”


Section D

  1. It’s raining cats and dogs
  2. How much is that doggy in the window? Another rather dated song but everyone seemed to get it.
  3. To let the cat out of the bag
  4. To be in the dog-house
  5. Curiosity killed the cat
  6. To be a dog in the manger
  7. To put a cat among the pigeons
  8. Every dog has his day
  9. To grin like a Cheshire cat
  10. You Ain’t Nothing but a Hound Dog


Section E

  1. The Mayor of Casterbridge
  2. The Great Gatsby. Some had The Gentle Giant. If this is a book, I’m confident that it hasn’t been screened, so could not have been the answer I intended
  3. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
  4. Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde. This one caught a lot of people out
  5. The Da Vinci Code
  6. For Whom the Bell Tolls
  7. James and the Giant Peach
  8. My Family and Other Animals
  9. The Diary of a Nobody
  10. Farewell, my Lovely


Section F

  1. To make a song and dance about something
  2. Whistle a Happy Tune
  3. To blow your own trumpet
  4. To lead somebody (or someone) a merry dance
  5. Going for a song
  6. Listen to the Music of the Night
  7. To face the music. A fair number had “Thank you for the music” but that only works if you treat thank you as one word, so I wouldn’t allow it
  8. If music be the food of love…
  9. There’s many a good tune played on an old fiddle
  10. …and all that jazz!


Section G

  1. Keep calm and carry on
  2. Between you, me and the gatepost
  3. To have a chip on your shoulder
  4. Flattery will get you nowhere. There were a few variations on this which I didn’t feel were authentic sayings, so would disallow
  5. Don’t just stand there – do something!
  6. A change is as good as a rest
  7. California, here I come!
  8. Pull the other one – it’s got bells on. Sorry you didn’t have much room to write the answer. Redesigning the form to provide more space would result in rather small print and/or sacrificing some of the festive decoration which has become a traditional part of the form.
  9. Nothing to write home about
  10. All’s Well that Ends Well


The winning ‘sayings’ in section H will be published on the PCNH website ( as soon as the judging committee have made their decision.

This year’s winners were from villages near Petworth, Haslemere and Scotland.

Thank you for another tremendous response to the quiz. When we draw winners, we only check to see whether an entry is eligible to win the prize in question after we have drawn it. If an entry we have drawn isn’t eligible to win a particular prize then we keep drawing until we draw one that is. This means I don’t need to study every entry (which would take weeks!) and I only ever get a general impression of how many people were able to complete the quiz correctly. From what I have seen I think it was probably quite challenging this year. I don’t consciously try to make it easy or difficult, and, as I already know all the answers, it is difficult for me to gauge how difficult other people may find it. Most of all I hope it was fun. You are a very loyal bunch and there are too many of you for me to send all of you a thank you letter, but on behalf of our wonderful nursing home may I take this opportunity to thank you all collectively. So far you have raised £21.775, and as we always receive some donations after the quiz has closed, the total is bound to go higher.

Andrew Brooke