In 1949, if a Helensburgh resident called someone in Wollongong, it was effectively treated as a long distance call.
That was one of a range of issues the Mercury had with the area's telephone system which it said had not kept pace with the city's growth.
"It is doubtful that any centre in NSW has a less satisfactory telephone service ... than Greater Wollongong," a Mercury editorial stated.
"Callers hundreds of miles away can make contact with Sydney, for example, with infinitely less delay than is experienced here."
So it was welcome news that extra phone "channels" would be installed in the city - including from Wollongong to Thirroul and from the city to Sydney.
But it was likely that calls made in some parts of the area would still be considered long distance.
The Mercury reported that if the area from Helensburgh to Dapto was treated as a local call zone, then telephone rental fees would have to increase substantially.
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