Watch: First Dates' barman Merlin Griffiths gives update on cancer recovery
The 47-year-old barman - who has undergone 'life-saving' surgery after being diagnosed with Stage Three bowel cancer in 2021 - told BBC Breakfast he should should have been diagnosed sooner, but he did not take the signs seriously.
Griffiths said: "I should have got there earlier but I did get there."
Read more: Adele Roberts announces she is cancer free
He added: "I tried to sweep it under the carpet but I should have taken it more seriously. The initial checks aren't very invasive and are very easy and quick to do."
The star of the Channel 4 dating show revealed he was feeling "very well, all things considered."
He said he is, "on the road to recovery, it's long and slow but we'll get there."
He said: "I think it's very important that people follow up these symptoms. The sooner you catch it better it is for you."
Griffiths has a young daughter named Alix with his partner Lucile, and said he was grateful for the incredible support of his family.
He said: "They have been a rock throughout this. Without the support of my family, what could I have done?"
Speaking about telling his daughter about his diagnosis he said: "I did it very frankly and very honestly. I think much like doctors will speak to patients. You literally have to say the truth as it is."
Griffiths was fitted with a stoma bag following surgery to remove a tumour about 4.5cm wide from his bowel in April 2022.
He was readmitted for further treatment in June, following setbacks with his stoma bag — a pouch fitted to collect stools through a hole in the stomach following bowel surgery.
First Dates — which also stars French Maître d' Fred Sirieix — recently aired its 18th series.
The show relocated to Manchester after 15 series filming at Paternoster Chop House in London.
Watch: Britain's longest surviving bowel cancer patient describes the importance of early diagnosis