One of the UK’s best-known mentalists has spoken to The Sun newspaper about his sexual orientation.

Under the headline “I’m A Mind Bender” Derren Brown revealed he has a boyfriend. He first confirmed he was gay in an article for the Independent on Sunday in 2007.

“I’ve been with my partner for a year – and it’s perfect,” he told The Sun.

“Coming out when you are in the public eye is one of those things that isn’t an issue to yourself, your friends or your family. But you have to make a statement about it.

“You have to be open and up front – or you end up turning it into a dark secret in your mind.”

The 37-year-old, who is best-known for his TV programmes where he uses mind-reading and hypnotism techniques on members of the public, apologised for disappointing his female fans.

“I’m desperately sorry to the girls who may have had a crush on me. If any of them want to try to turn me . … no, no, I shouldn’t say that.”

Brown’s TV performances have been controversial. In 2003 he claimed that he was playing Russian Roulette “almost live” on air but it was later revealed the gun only contained blanks.

His 2006 show The Heist saw him persuade the unwitting people who attended a “motivational seminar” to rob a security van of their own accord, without being hypnotised, but rather exposed to psychological empowerment tools.

The show was praised for its insight into human social psychology.

In September last year, writing in the I Believe column for the Independent on Sunday, Mr Brown stated:

“It took me being in a relationship with a guy for a month before I told anyone I was thus inclined. If anything, I was disappointed to learn that it wasn’t much of a surprise. Possibly my penchant for interior decor had given the game away.”