The first edition of the Leader, which was published 60 years ago this week ( June 29, 1960) was 28 pages, including five devoted to motoring, four covering women's news and two sport pages.
The front page lead story highlighted the area's traffic needs and beneath that was a report about shopping hour laws, which at that time banned Saturday afternoon and Sunday trading.
Small shops were under threat from chain stores and the new phenomena of supermarkets, and Woolooware grocer George Gear placed an ad warning he would report any business he found breaking shopping hour laws.
A front page ad for Illawarra Appliance Store offered a new car radio, including installation, for eight shillings ($1.60) a week and inside there were full page ads for Barter's clothing stores at Hurstville and Miranda, Walton's department store at Rockdale and Caringbah, and electrical stores, Diment's, Lawrence Bros, Eric Anderson's and H. G. Palmer.
Pages of classified ads offered everything from houses and cars to chooks and cots.
Other stories in the first edition included:
- Hurstville Council was about to call tenders for a new civic centre.
- Rockdale Methodist Church Men's Brotherhood congratulated the council on continuing a ban on organised Sunday sport on council fields.
- A Go-Kart track costing £10,000 ($20,000) was under construction in the factory area on Taren Point Road, Caringbah.
- Rockdale shopkeepers were divided over the impact of the new West Botany Street bypass on business.
- Kogarah housewife, Mrs C O'Callaghan established a message-taking service for businesses because of telephone-connection delays.
- Rockdale Council applied to the governor for proclamation of the municipality as a city.
Some of the other stories published in the Leader's first year included:
- Rockdale shopkeepers were divided over whether the new West Botany Street bypass would ease traffic congestion or lose them trade.
- Plans to reclaim 200 acres (81ha) of Gwawley Bay for an "aquatic suburb"' [Sylvania Waters] went before the council.
- Hurstville and Kogarah councils discussed building a combined St George swimming centre after earlier plans for almost identical Olympic pools.
- Legislation was drawn up to give the Maritime Services Board control of Botany Bay in order to make it Sydney's second port.
- Debate raged after MP Ian Griffith claimed the shire was too big to be run by one council and should be divided near Sutherland Hospital.
- Mortdale housewives complained about soot from the smoke stacks of the brickworks in Judd Street.
- Plans were unveiled for a new Hotel Cronulla in front of the original structure. [It has since been replaced by the Sur Mer building, incorporating the hotel now known as Northies].
- Work was about to begin on an £80,000 ($160,000) residential school for handicapped children at Sylvania Heights.
- A crackdown on surfboard riders at Cronulla was announced, with the council planning to charge a registration fee of five shillings (50 cents) unless they were members of a surf life saving club.
- Anthony Morris, 18, of Chuter Avenue, used a bow and arrow to help kill an 8ft (2.5m) long bronze whaler shark which was washed into Ramsgate baths by big seas.
- An appeal was launched by 2UE's Gary O'Callaghan to provide a rescue vehicle for the district's ambulance service.