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07th Jun 2022

First Dates’ Fred gives update on Merlin following cancer surgery

Sarah McKenna Barry

The First Dates star said that Merlin is being “incredibly stoic in the face of what’s happening to him”.

Fred Sirieix, the maitre’d of Channel 4’s First Dates, has given an update on his co-star Merlin Griffiths, who recently underwent surgery for bowel cancer.

Merlin, who works as a bartender on the popular dating show, was diagnosed with cancer last year and has been undergoing treatment ever since.

Giving an update on his friend, Fred told the Mail Online that he is in “good spirits”.

He told the publication that Merlin is being “incredibly stoic in the face of what’s happening to him”.

Fred said: “I really love him. He’s incredibly positive and pragmatic as well. I’m just not surprised because that’s the type of guy he is.

“You can always rely on Merlin.”

He went on to say that they keep in touch over the phone, and that he hopes they can spend a Sunday together soon.

Fred added that Merlin’s situation reminds him of how precious life is. He said: “It reminds you of how lucky you are. If you’re healthy and you have your wits about you, that’s it. You are having a good life.

“But it can be all taken away from us so quickly and unexpectedly so we’ve got to cherish and enjoy every single moment.”

Earlier this year, Merlin credited the NHS with saving his life after undergoing surgery.

Sharing a selfie from his hospital bed to mark April, which is Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, Merlin wrote “Thank you NHS for literally saving my life.”

The First Dates star discovered he was ill when he attended the hospital with bloating and nausea in September 2021. Doctors subsequently discovered that he had a stage three tumour in his bowel.

For more information on bowel cancer, head to the HSE’s official website right here.