Nigella Lawson has threatened to sue a PR who has claimed the controversial photos of her being ‘choked’ by her estranged husband Charles Saatchi were a publicity stunt.

Richard Hillgrove maintained in a blog post that the shots of the incident, which occurred at a Mayfair restaurant, had “misled the public, acquaintances and others by knowingly orchestrating an ‘assault’ as a cynical PR exercise”.

He also accused the TV chef of ‘feigning distress’ at the assault.

However a law firm acting for Nigella has now written to Mr Hillgrove demanding the post be taken down, and also insisting he apologises via his Twitter account – saying that ‘failure to act swiftly will only aggravate the damage’.

Mr Hillgrove has so far refused, and indicated he is prepared to go to court over the claims, saying: “I think it’s grossly unfair the way Charles Saatchi has been treated.”

The PR – who runs his own self-named company – added: “Most media commentators have had lots to say and have not been asked to take it down. This is a gross over-reaction. Why should I be crushed and threatened?”

He also said he had not actually spoken to Mr Saatchi about what had happened.

The couple are set to finalise their divorce on July 31, while Mr Saatchi recently accepted a police caution over the incident.