Simon Cowell was reportedly once secretly engaged to a Page 3 girl.

The 52-year-old music mogul apparently proposed to glamour model Louise Payne - who he met in 1995 following the breakdown of her marriage to Right Said Fred star Fred Fairbrass - but was devastated when their three-year romance collapsed because she wanted to start a family.

A source said: ''Simon was heartbroken. They tried to make it work but it all went wrong.

''It was just before he started on 'Pop Idol'. Louise wanted kids and he knew he wasn't ready.

''He never stopped loving her, though. He was heartbroken.''

According to the Daily Star newspaper, which Louise modelled for, the pair first swapped numbers at a function in London and enjoyed several romantic dates before one ''disastrous'' meeting dampened The Passion.

The insider said: ''He went out with Louise and he had the flu so was feeling really bad. Simon thought he had blown it and things fizzled out.''

But 12 months later they got back in touch, and Simon proposed in a lift during a business trip to New York.

However, the path to love did not sun smoothly. The source added: ''The relationship had its ups and downs. They split twice but he was so in love with her he kept trying to make it work.

''After the third attempt, they split for good.

Simon has since dated models Jackie St Clair and Jasmine Leonard, TV presenter Terri Seymour, make-up artist Mezghan Hussainy, and is believed to have had a fling with 'x factor' judge Dannii Minogue.