Sarah Harding had to be told to shut up so Tom Crane could propose to her.

The Girls Aloud beauty was "chattering away" so much, her DJ fiance said he had to ask her to be quiet so he could present her with a diamond and sapphire ring last New Year's Eve (31.12.10) when they were holidaying in the Maldives..

He said: "The New Year's celebrations were gearing up and Sarah was chattering away, so much so that I had to say to her in the end, 'Will you just be quiet for a second and listen to me? There's something I really want to ask you.'

"I pulled The Ring out of my pocket - which I was amazed she hadn't spotted because it was in a big old box - got on one knee and asked her to marry me."

The 29-year-old star admitted that although she knew Tom - who she has been dating for three years - wanted to marry her one day, the "sweet and heartfelt" proposal came as a complete shock.

She told Britain's Hello! magazine: "Tommy would say to me, 'When are you going to marry me, Harding?' But when the moment came, I wasn't expecting at all. And, although Tom stumbled over his words a little, I loved that because it was really sweet and heartfelt. He hadn't rehearsed some big speech - he was saying how he really felt.

"My initial reaction was, 'Are you serious?' followed by total hysteria."