First Dates star Merlin Griffiths ‘frustrated’ after setback as he receives cancer treatment

First Dates’ Merlin Griffiths had a ‘setback’ amid his cancer treatment earlier this year (Instagram/Merlin Griffiths )
First Dates’ Merlin Griffiths had a ‘setback’ amid his cancer treatment earlier this year (Instagram/Merlin Griffiths )

First Dates star Merlin Griffiths revealed he had a “setback” in April as he continued his treatment for bowel cancer, though he is “getting better” now.

The 47-year-old gave the health update in a new interview as he discussed how he’s been coping a year on from his diagnosis with the disease.

Griffiths is the fan favourite barman in Channel 4’s First Dates and spoke about his “long” recovery before the new series of First Dates Hotel arrives tonight.

He told “It’s been a long, slow road to recovery. I got myself up and around [because] you’re supposed to do what’s called active recovery these days.

Griffiths called the NHS “amazing” after he was able to return home following his surgery six days later.

He said: “That was all going well. I had a minor setback so I was in for a couple of procedures.”

Griffiths did not disclose the setback he suffered, though he added that he is “getting better”.

He continued to speak of how his body “doesn’t heal the same way it used to unfortunately” before having radiotherapy (a radiation treatment which kills cancer cells), and so was forced to take it slow in recovery.

Griffiths said: “The last six to eight weeks have been quite frustrating, largely having to cool my heels and not being able to do what I’d like to do.

“But otherwise, we are getting better. It’s a long, slow road, as anyone who’s going through cancer treatment knows.”

The TV barman shared that he has had support from his First Date co-stars, saying: “They’ve been brilliant. Fred [Sirieix] and I chat regularly, at least once a month we’re on the phone, and he constantly texts me, to see what’s going on.

“They all check in with me as well, which is lovely. It’s nice to know they care. It’s important. It makes me feel much better.”

Griffiths stars in First Dates Hotel and teased a lot for fans to look forward to, as he said: “There’s a pretty broad spectrum of people coming on. It’s so much more involving than what we do in the restaurant.”

The TV star is positive about his future on First Dates, as he added: “I’m quite happy to continue doing it, I absolutely love it.

“What do I hope for the future of First Dates? More First Dates! Why not? I mean, love is one of these eternal constants. It’s an endless subject that’s endlessly fascinating.”