The presenter likes short dark locks

Ben Shephard is hoping to persuade Susanna Reid to go for the chop.

The presenter – who launched ITV’s Good Morning Britain show with Susanna in April 2014 – would like to see his co-host with a new hairdo.

‘I do have a thing about short, dark hair so I’m working on Susanna,’ quips Ben, 39.

‘If she cuts it, you’ll know I’ve finally got the upper hand.’

Ben clearly does like a brunette bob – the TV star’s wife Annie, with whom he has sons Sam and Jack, sports his favourite style.

The TV star seems to be enjoying his return to breakfast television and has bonded with Susanna over a shared interest in sport.

Ben originally left GMTV back in 2010 to spend more time with his loved ones.

‘The hours had become really difficult for the family,’ he admits.

‘We had two young boys who didn’t sleep at night and I remember coming home at 11am and finding my wife, Annie, passed out by Jack’s cot because she was so tired.

‘I needed to be around more for her and the boys, it was that simple.’

Having had experience of early morning television, Ben is aware of the amusing shenanigans that can take place.

Last year the presenter revealed that he was once tricked into tickling an elephant’s nipples on live TV.

Ben was meeting the animals for a segment on GMTV and was keen to get them to make a noise during the live broadcast.

‘An elephant keeper told me to tickle its nipple as elephants love that and it makes them purr,’ said Ben.

‘So I’m chatting to Lorraine Kelly in the studio and tweaking its nipple and the elephant keepers are in hysterics.

‘When we went off air, they admitted it would make that noise if you just said hello to it.’

Ben has had many memorable encounters throughout his career, especially during a wild outing with yet another short-haired brunette.

‘I once spent a brilliant day pole dancing with Dannii Minogue,’ Ben’s previously told TV Extra.

‘We ended up in a club in Mayfair and I had to explain my pole burns on my inner thighs to my wife.’

Anna Francis