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Paul Chantler (born 12 October 1959) is a radio programming consultant based in the United Kingdommarker. He has been involved in the radio industry for 25 years as a journalist, presenter, producer and programmer.

He is currently senior partner at United Radio in Londonmarker and works with clients including GMG Radio, Emap Radio, UTV Radio, Premier Christian Radio and the RadioCentre in the UK, Communicorp in Irelandmarker and Europe, and Radio City in Indiamarker. He has also worked for Macquarie in Australia and Emmis in the USAmarker. His most recent major assignment has been working for GMG Radio working on their Smooth Radio brand in London and the East Midlands.

Paul is co-author with Peter Stewart of the textbook Essential Radio Journalism published in June 2009 by A&C Black. The Foreword is written by Jon Snow of Channel 4 News who started his career in radio. Essential Radio Journalism started life in 1992 as a book called Local Radio Journalism, co-authored by Sim Harris. Its successor Basic Radio Journalism, was published by Focal Press (a division of Elsevier) in 2002. It became a best-seller and was been translated into Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Russian.


Paul started his career in local newspapers in Kentmarker (Kent and Sussex Courier, Kent Messenger, Kent Evening Post) before joining Invicta Radio as a journalist and news presenter in 1984. During his four years at Invicta, he also became the presenter of the station’s lunchtime show and regularly broadcast roadshows from around the Kent coast resorts.

After leaving Invicta, he joined Southern FM in Brightonmarker as news editor and helped launch the new East Sussexmarker service from Eastbournemarker.

He was then recruited to the BBC working as breakfast show presenter for the new station in Swindonmarker, BBC Wiltshire Sound, where he was the first voice on air at the station’s launch in 1989.

Paul then went into radio management, firstly as head of news at the Chiltern Radio Group. He became group programme director in 1991, just as the group expanded into owning 11 stations. During his time at Chiltern, Paul helped launch one of the UK’s first regional stations, Galaxy 101, covering Bristolmarker and South Walesmarker where he became managing director. Galaxy 101's format was groundbreaking in the UK mixing mainstream old and new dance music, playing Motown next to contemporary dance hits. In its first year, the station achieved a weekly reach of 13%, at the time the highest ever launch audience figure for a regional radio station. Paul was also a founder and managing director of Network News, a small-scale rival to IRN.

He left Chiltern in 1996 and became group programme director of the Essex Radio Group. During his four years at Essex, he was responsible for the audience success of flagship station Essex FM, the highly-praised anti-drugs roadshow for schools called 2 Smart 4 Drugs, and the launch of the East of England regional dance station Vibe FM.

In 1997, he was named UK Commercial Radio Programmer of the Year and in 1999 won the UK Commercial Radio Social Action Award.

Former editor of The Sun newspaper Kelvin MacKenzie headhunted Paul to become group programme director of The Wireless Group in 2000. Apart from running the group’s 18 local stations, Paul was also programme director of national speech station talkSPORT.

Two years later he started his own radio programming consultancy business. During this time, he undertook interim management assignments for Hallam FM in Sheffieldmarker, Metro Radio in Newcastle upon Tynemarker and Century FM in North West England as well as numerous projects for radio groups in the UK, Europe and Asia.

In 2005, Paul joined international programming consultancy United Radio as Senior Partner and a director, where he worked on various projects both in the UK and worldwide including Radio City in India, Radio Flash in Poland and Zip FM in Lithuania.

He was a shareholder and non-executive director of Planet Broadcasting Co Ltd, the company which owns and operates KCFM, the radio station for Hullmarker which started broadcasting on 1 August 2007. KCFM was acquired by the Lincs FM Group on 17th June 2009.

In 2008 Paul worked on an exclusive nine-month assignment with GMG Radio as full-time Programme Consultant to Smooth Radio London. His work for GMG Radio continues in 2009 with his appointment as Acting Programme Director of Smooth Radio East Midlands in Nottingham until the end of July.


In 1997, Paul was one of the characters featured in the TV docu-soap Lakesiders, shown on BBC One. The programme featured his often fractious working relationship with Essex FM breakfast DJ Martin Day. Lakesiders was scheduled after EastEnders and was watched by a regular audience of up to 10 million viewers. A new series, called Return To Lakesiders featuring Paul and Martin, was shown on BBC Two on 18th, 19 and 22 August 2008.

Paul appeared in a similar role, featuring very similar 'arguments' and relationships with the presenters, in the version of the show centered around the MetroCentremarker called Trouble in Store which aired on BBC1 in 2005.


  1. Basic Radio Journalism - Elsevier
  2. The Radio Magazine Past Radio News : June 2000
  3. Radio Today with United Radio..: Essex FM TV show returns

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