Gordon Ramsay open letter plea to mother-in-law

Gordon Ramsay's family troubles became even more public today when the celebrity chef sent an open letter to his mother-in-law, asking her to stop "punishing" her daughter.

The fiery Kitchen Nightmares star penned the letter, which was published in the London Evening Standard, following the fall-out with his father-in-law Chris Hutcheson, whom he sacked last month after 12 years as business partners.

Ramsay said he was writing the appeal after his wife, Tana, received a letter from her mother, Greta, asking her to stay away from her family.

The Kitchen Nightmares star wrote: "This has to be one of the most painful letters I've ever had to write.

"Listening to Tana in floods of tears reading your letter from you asking that she stays away from her family is so awfully wrong."

He called the decision to remove his father-in-law from the business "the hardest and most important decision in my entire life" but accused him of being manipulating and controlling.

He wrote that Mr Hutcheson recently "suggested my mood swings were down to involvement with drugs; my God did that hurt. How dare he ever suggest this on the back of my frustration and dealings with my younger brother and his addiction".

Ramsay said it felt as though his father-in-law had been running the business as "a dictator" and claimed his employees had looks of "relief and joy" on their faces when he told them he was gone.

Ramsay, who wrote the letter on his 44th birthday, concluded with: "I know how hard this must be for you Greta, and I'm not expecting a birthday card, but your (sic) punishing your daughter and our four children, for all the wrong reasons, it's so sad. She's an amazing woman and you've been a fantastic mum please don't stop!"

His letter comes after former chief executive Mr Hutcheson, 62, said he had been subject to a "public hanging" and called Ramsay, whose company has been hit by heavy losses, "a monster".

In 2008, Ramsay was accused of cheating on Tana with a long-term mistress, a claim the chef called a "load of b......t".

The Evening Standard said the Hutchesons would not comment on today's letter, but a friend of Mr Hutcheson denied he had ever accused his son-in-law of taking drugs, and added: "It would have been nice to have ended a 12-year relationship in an orderly way over a drink but Gordon chose to lock him out of the office without notice. That is what's caused the family rift."