TWO former pupils of Gordonstoun have been banned from the grounds and all associated events because of a light-hearted article about the headmaster punishing his own daughter for a drinking offence.

Bruce Jacobs, the recently appointed editor of the Bireme, the magazine produced by the Gordonstoun Association, and Major Ian Dalzel-Job, the chairman of the association, have been given no official reason for the ban but the article was mentioned.

The magazine cover ran the headline ''Pyper vs Pyper - head suspends own daughter in drunken scandal.''

Inside under the heading ''Daughter RUM-bled,'' the article recounts the incident earlier this year when Mark Pyper, the 54-year-old headmaster, suspended Sarah, his 16-year-old daughter, from all social activities for a fortnight when she admitted drinking in the grounds. A similar punishment was meted out to another girl in the same circumstances.

Gordonstoun's old boys include the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Edinburgh, and 4000 copies of the Bireme are sent out to former pupils. The article which caused offence includes a statement from the school and ends with another play on words: ''The Bireme asks that the incident does not hang-over her for the remainder of her education.''

Mr Jacobs, a 28-year-old marketing manager who lives in Surrey, said yesterday he had not intended to cause offence: ''The establishment at the school has reacted with fury and have banned both me and Major Dalzel-Job from the school.

''They haven't given either of us an official reason but they did mention the article in the Bireme. The ironic thing is that the whole time I was at Gordonstoun I couldn't wait to get away, and now they've gone and banned me 12 years after I left.'' He said there was no anti-Gordonstoun sentiment behind the magazine.

Major Dalzel-Job, 56, said: ''This whole thing has come as a bit of a surprise, but I think the school is pretty angry about the front of the magazine and the story.

''From my point of view, I just want to get this sorted out as quickly as possible, but I have stood by the editor and what he was doing. Nevertheless, I was a bit shocked by what he has done in the magazine.''

They have now launched a poll on the association's website to gauge members' opinions on the Bireme and its contents.

Major Dalzel-Job, who lives in semi-retirement in Rosyth , said: ''Almost all of the responses have been positive and I have written to the headmaster to try and get myself and Mr Jacobs reinstated.

Mr Jacobs believes the row will not help Mr Pyper's image. ''One of the criticisms that I often defend the headmaster against is of wanting to exercise too much control over any and all information. People describe him as worse than New Labour in this area. Despite my defence of him, this particular incident has astonished me.''

Sir James Weatherhall, the chairman of the board of governors at Gordonstoun, expressed his concerns in a letter sent out to all 4000 members of the association. He emphasised that the association was an independent organisation and questioned the content of the Bireme.

''This magazine may have been intended to be a whimsical, humorous glance at school life or it may have come across as something rather different.

''I think it is important for me, as chairman of governors, to make it clear that the Gordonstoun Association is an independent organisation producing its own publications.

''These, therefore, do not necessarily reflect in their style the school's ethos, nor in any way in their content are they representative of Gordonstoun's development and progress.''