Sir Paul McCartney has apologised on behalf of Yoko Ono for her embarrassing on him at the Q Awards - insisting the Japanese artist is "not the brightest of buttons".

Ono took a swipe at McCartney when she took to the stage at the London ceremony last week (10OCT05) to collect a special award on behalf of her late husband John Lennon.

She told the gathering, "John... would say, 'They always cover Paul's songs, they never cover mine.' I said to him, 'You're a good songwriter, it's not June-with-spoon that you write."

But McCartney, who has repeatedly clashed with Ono since Lennon's death in 1980, is refusing to retaliate.

He says, "She's John's wife so I have to respect her for that, but I don't have to do any further. I don't think she's the brightest of buttons.

"I don't want to get in a bun fight but she's said some particularly daft things in her time.

"Yoko is something else. Her life is dedicated to putting me down, that's what she seems to do all the time.

"But she will notice that I attempt very strongly not to put her down, I have respect for her as my former comrades wife."