United Kingdom Telephone Charge Groups
or, as the GPO called them, Charging Groups
 
Contents
The Map I have is a photocopy of a photocopy of a …  At some stage along the line someone has re-inked all the numbers by hand.  I am currently repeating the re-inking exercise digitally but it is a slow job so if anybody has a clean copy of this map, please let me know.
 
The List is arranged alphabetically within Regions:
 
number
of
groups
HCHome Counties96includes Iver (London Director fringe)
LLondon10London Director Area, London Director fringe (except Iver)
and Gravesend & Stanford-le-Hope (both beyond the fringe)
MMidlands57
NENorth East78includes Kingston upon Hull
NINorthern Ireland34the un-numbered group in the middle is Lough Neagh
NWNorth West44includes Douglas (Isle of Man)
SCScotland168
SWSouth West80includes Guernsey and Jersey
WBWales and the Borders72
Total639
 
Group SC 51 Eigg is listed and shown on the map as covering the islands of Eigg, Rum, Muck, Canna, Sanday and Soay.  It is shown as non-local to the rest of the world.  ++++ Mallaig (01687)
Group SC 139 is listed as Salen.  This group ended up containing just Glenborrodale and Kilchoan (01972) on the Ardnamurchan peninsula.  Salen itself landed up in Group SC 153 along with Strontian, Kingairloch and Morvern (01967).
 
Description
 
Charge Groups were introduced in 1958 at the same time as Subscriber Trunk Dialling.  (Before that, I believe each exchange had its own set of call charges - imagine that - a charge matrix with 30 million entries and only the most primitive computers to handle it!)
 
A Charge Group (CG) covered an area roughly twenty miles diameter containing a dozen exchanges on average.  The London Director CG was the exception: it contained all exchanges within fifteen miles of Oxford Circus.
All exchanges within a CG had the same call charges: calls within the CG were Local rate and with a few exceptions (see below) calls to adjacent CG's were also Local rate.
 
Rod Sladen reported that at the television transmitter at Holme Moss high on the Pennine moors between Lancashire and Yorkshire, there are two telephones on the engineer's desk (in case one is not working in an emergency).  One is connected to the nearest exchange to the east: Holmfirth in the Huddersfield Charge Group and the other to the nearest exchange to the west: probably Glossop in the Glossop Charge Group.  These two charge groups are 'contiguous but non-adjacent' so a call from one of these phones to the other would be an 'a' rate trunk call.
 
Demise
 
I think it is true to say that Charge Groups are now a matter of history.  In 2004 Nov, I looked at this list of Residential Telephone Tariffs for the three telcos who actually provide lines - British Telecom (BT), Telewest and NTL (to judge by their web site NTL is not an abbreviation - they are called ntl: ).  All three are charging the same amounts of a given time of day irrespective of distance.
 
Even before that the boundaries were getting blurred.  In New Addington, a suburb of Croydon, a BT subscriber would get a number on Lodge Hill exchange in the Swanley Charge Group.  They could call Sevenoaks as a local call but to call Watford would be an 'a' or possibly even 'b' rate trunk call.  But a Telewest (the local cable TV company) subscriber in New Addington would get a London number (020 8407 xxxx for example).  For them Sevenoaks would be an 'a' rate call and Watford would be local.  
 
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Roger W Haworth   2004 Dec 16
United Kingdom Telephone Charging Groups Home Counties Abingdon Aldershot Alton (Hants.) Ascot (Berks.) Ashford (Kent) Attleborough Aylesbury (Bucks.) Banbury Basingstoke Bedford Bicester Bishops Stortford Braintree Brentwood (Essex) Brighton Brooke Buckingham Bungay Bury-St-Edmunds Cambridge Canterbury Chatham (Kent) aka Medway Chelmsford Chichester Chipping Norton Clacton-on-Sea Colchester Cranbrook Cromer Dereham Diss Docking Dover Downham Market Eastbourne East Grinstead Ely Fakenham (Norfolk) Fareham (Hants) Folkestone Great Dunmow Great Shefford Great Yarmouth Guildford (Surrey) Haslemere Hastings Haverhill Haywards Heath Heathfield High Wycombe Hitchin (Herts.) Horsham (Sussex) Ipswich Iver Kings Lynn Knebworth Leighton Buzzard Lowestoft Markyate (Herts.) Madingley Maidenhead Maidstone Maldon (Essex) Nettlebed Newbury (Berks.) Newdigate Newmarket North Walsham Norwich Oxford Pakenham (Suffolk) Petersfield (Hants.) Portsmouth Pulborough (Horsham) Reading Royston (Herts.) Ryde Rye (Hastings) Saffron Walden Sandy (Beds.) Saxmundham Sevenoaks Shottisham Sittingbourne Southend-on-Sea Stowmarket Sudbury (Suffolk) Swaffham Thame (Oxon.) Thanet Thetford Tunbridge Wells Uckfield Witney Wolverton (Bucks.) Worthing United Kingdom Telephone Charging Group London Colney Heath Esher Gravesend Hoddesdon London Inner Area Merstham Romford Stanford-le-Hope Swanley Watford (Herts.) UK Telephone Charging Groups Midlands Ashbourne Bewdley Birmingham Boston (Lincs.) Bourne Bridgnorth Burton-on-Trent Clopton (Northants.) Coalville Coventry Crewe Dapple Heath Derby Doddington (Cambs.) Evesham Grantham (Lincs.) Hanley Swan Hinckley Holbeach Honington (Lincs.) Huntingdon Ipstones Kettering Lapworth Leamington Spa Leicester Loughborough Mansfield Market Harborough Matlock Melton Mowbray Meriden Newark Northampton Nottingham Oakham Peterborough Redditch Ripley (Derby) Rugby Skegness Sleaford Spalding Stafford Stamford Stoke-on-Trent Stourbridge Stratford-upon-Avon Tamworth Burntwood Warboys Weedon (Northants.) Wellingborough Whatton Wisbech Wolverhampton Worcester UK Telephone Charging Group North East Alford (Lincs.) Alnwick Barnard Castle Barnsley (Yorks.) Bedale Belford Bellingham (Northumberland) Berwick-upon-Tweed Bishop Auckland Boroughbridge (Yorks.) Bradford (Yorks.) Bridlington Brigg Chesterfield Consett Darlington Doncaster Driffield Durham Easingwold Gainsborough Goole Grimsby Guisborough Guiseley Halifax Haltwhistle Harrogate Hartlepools Hathersage Helmsley Hexham Huddersfield Hull Keighley Killingholme Kirkwhelpington Leeds Leyburn Lincoln Louth (Lincs.) Malton Market Rasen Market Weighton Martin Middlesborough Morpeth Newcastle upon Tyne Northallerton North Cave Patrington Pickering Pocklington Pontefract Retford Richmond (Yorks.) Ripon Rothbury Rotherham Scarborough Scunthorpe Sedgefield Selby Settle Sheffield Sigglesthorne aka Hornsea Skipton Spilsby Stanhope (Weardale) Sunderland aka Wearside Thirsk Wakefield West Heslerton Wetherby Whitby (Yorks.) Worksop Wylam York United Kingdom Telephone Charge Groups Northern Ireland Antrim Armagh Ballycastle (Co. Antrim) Ballyclare Ballygawley Ballymena Ballymoney Banbridge Belfast Carrickmore Coleraine Cookstown Downpatrick Dungannon Enniskillen Fivemiletown Kesh Kilrea Kircubbin Larne Limavady Lisburn Lisnaskea Londonderry Magherafelt Martinstown (Co. Antrim) Newcastle (Co. Down) Newry Bangor (Co. Down) Newtownstewart (Co. Tyrone) Omagh Portadown Rostrevor Saintfield United Kingdom Telephone Charge Group North West Appleby (Westmorland) Barrow-in-Furness Blackburn (Lancs.) Blackpool Bolton Brampton (Cumberland) Burnley Buxton (Derbys.) Carlisle Clitheroe Congleton Coppull Douglas (I. of Man) Frodsham Garstang Glossop Gosforth (Cumberland) Grange-over-Sands Hawkshead Hornby Kendal Keswick Knutsford Lancaster Liverpool Macclesfield Manchester Millom New Mills (Derbys.) Northwich Penrith Pooley Bridge Preston (Lancs.) Rainford Raughton Head Rochdale Sedbergh Shap Southport Warrington (Lancs.) Whitehaven Wigan Wigton (Cumberland) Workington UK Telephone Charge Groups Scotland Aberdeen Aberfeldy Abington (Lanarks.) Aboyne Alford (Aberdeen) Alloa Annan Arbroath Ardgay Ardrossan-Saltcoats Arrochar Ayr Ayton Ballachulish Ballater Ballindalloch Banchory Banff Bathgate Benbecula Biggar Blairgowrie Brechin (Angus) Broadford (I. of Skye) Brodick Campbeltown Carradale Castlebay Castle Douglas Coatbridge Coldstream Colonsay Coupar Angus Craigellachie Craignure Crieff Cumnock Dalmally Dingwall Dumbarton Dumfries Dunbar Dundee Dunfermline Dunkeld Dunoon Duns East Kilbride Edinbane Edinburgh Eigg Elgin Ellon Fair Isle Falkirk Fionnphort Fordoun Forfar Forres Fort Augustus Fortrose Fort William Foula Fraserburgh Gairloch Galashiels Girvan Glasgow Glenurquhart Golspie Grantown-on-Spey Great Bernera Greenock Harris (I. of Lewis) Harthill (Lanarks.) Hawick Helensburgh Helmsdale Huntly Insch Inveraray (Argyll) Inverness Inverurie (Aberdeen) Johnstone Keith Kelso Kilchrenan (Argyll) Killearn Killin Kilmarnock Kilmelford Kingussie Kinloch Rannoch Kinross Kirkcaldy Kirkcudbright Kirkwall Kirriemuir Kyle (Ross-shire) Ladybank Laggan Lairg Lanark Langholm Lauder Lerwick Lochboisdale Lochcarron Lochgilphead Lochinver Lochmaddy Lockerbie Lybster Mallaig Maud Maybole Mid Yell Moffat Montrose Moscow Motherwell Nairn New Galloway New Luce Newton Stewart (Wigtownshire) North Berwick Oban Oldmeldrum Peat Inn Peebles Penicuik Perth Peterhead Pitlochry Port Ellen Portree (I. of Skye) Rothesay St Boswells Salen aka Glenborrodale Sanday Sandwick (Shetland) Sanquhar Scarinish Scourie Selkirk Stirling Stonehaven Stornoway Stranraer Strathdon Strathpeffer Strathy Strontian Tain Tarbert (Argyllshire) Thornhill (Dumfries) Thurso Tobermory Tomatin Tomdoun Tongue Tranent Trossachs Turriff Ullapool Voe Wick (Caithness) Wigtown UK Telephone Charge Group South West Andover Ashburton Axminster Barnstable Bath Bideford Blandford Bodmin Bournemouth Bourton-on-the-Water Brayford Bridgwater Bridport Bristol Bude Budleigh Salterton Bulford Camp Burley (Hants.) Camelford Cerne Abbas Chard Cheltenham Chippenham (Wilts.) Cirencester Crediton Devizes Dorchester (Dorset) Dulverton Dursley Exeter Falmouth Faringdon Frome Glastonbury Gloucester Guernsey Holsworthy Honiton Jersey Kingsbridge Launceston Liskeard Looe Lydney Lymington (Hants.) Malmesbury Marlborough Minehead (Somerset) Moretonhampstead Newton Abbot Newquay Okehampton Penzance Plymouth Rangeworthy Redruth Rockbourne Romsey (Hants.) St Austell Salisbury Scillonia Shaftesbury Shepton Mallet Southampton South Molton Stogumber Swindon Taunton Tavistock Temple Cloud Templecombe Tiverton Torquay Torrington Truro Wareham Warminster Weston-super-Mare Winchester Yeovil United Kingdom Telephone Charging Groups Wales and the Borders Aberangell aka Cemmaes Road Abergavenny Aberystwth Ammanford Bala Bangor (N. Wales) Barmouth Barry Betws-y-Coed Brecon (Wales) Bridgend (Glam.) Bromyard Builth Wells Caernarfon Carnarvon Caernarvon (N. Wales) Cardiff Cardigan Carmarthen (S. Wales) Chester Church Stretton Clynderwen Colwyn Bay Corwen Craven Arms Fishguard Haverfordwest Hay-on-Wye Hereford Holyhead Kington Knighton (Radnor) Lampeter Ledbury Leominster Llanarth Llandeilo Llandovery Llandrindod Wells Llandyssul Llanelli Llanidloes Llanon Llanwrtyd Wells Ludlow Machynlleth Market Drayton Merthyr Tydfil Milford Haven Mold Monmouth Narberth Neath Newport (Mon.) Newtown (Powys) Oswestry Pontypool Pontypridd Porthmadog Portmadoc Pwllheli Rhyl Ross-on-Wye Ruthin St Clears Shirenewton Shrewsbury Swansea Tarporley Wellington (Salop. Shrops.) Welshpool Wem Whitchurch (Salop. Shrops.) Wormbridge Wrexham