Cheryl Cole's boyfriend has been given permission by her father to propose marriage.

American dancer Tre Holloway, 27, reportedly called Garry Tweedy last week to ask to marry his daughter - who was wed to soccer star Ashley Cole for four years until 2010 - and was overjoyed when he said yes, though Garry has admitted he was reluctant to agree as he didn't want the 'Promise This' singer to get hurt again.

A source told the Sunday Mirror newspaper: ''After plucking up courage Tre phoned Garry last week. He was very surprised by Tre's call and told family friends how he almost said no.

''He didn't know if Cheryl was ready and wanted to protect her from getting hurt again. But he decided to give Tre his permission and asked to just make sure he was 100 per cent sure when he proposed.

''He warned Tre that Cheryl couldn't take another heartbreak and said there was nothing wrong with waiting a bit longer.

''Tre admitted he hadn't bought a ring yet but wanted his blessing for when the time feels right.''

Tre, who has been dating Cheryl for around eight months, wants to design his own ring and has asked his girlfriend's mother Joan Callaghan and Girls Aloud bandmates Kimberley Walsh and Nicola Roberts for advice.

The source added: ''Tre's so excited. He still doesn't know when he's going to pop the question, but he's looking at ring designs.

''Joan, Nicola and Kimberley have all told him that although Cheryl loves diamonds she doesn't expect some expensive rock.

''They told him to go for something ­classic and elegant. Kimberley warned him to steer clear of anything similar to her engagement ring from Ashley.

''Tre has an idea of what he's going to get and wants to have the ring specially ­designed as he wants it to be a one-off. He wants to include pearls on the ring somewhere as they are Cheryl's birthstone.''