A journalist from our rival newspaper the South London Press has admitted assaulting a senior Lambeth councillor at a glittering charity fundraiser.

Chief reporter Greg Truscott pushed Councillor Mark Bennett at the Mayor of Lambeth’s annual fundraising dinner, held on a cruise boat on the Thames on Wednesday, March 3.

He was cautioned by police after admitting an offence of common assault on the cabinet member for community safety, when interviewed at Brixton police station last Wednesday.

Lambeth Council has now banned him from all its buildings and events - including the town hall and the borough’s leisure centres.

Council leader Steve Reed said the move was a “precaution to protect staff from further attacks”.

The incident occurred on the upper deck of the boat, after Mr Truscott was angered by comments Councillor Bennett made about the South London Press’ (SLP) publication of sex ads.

Coun Bennett, who alleged he had bruising on his chest following the incident, had earlier called the newspaper “South London Pimps” on social networking site Twitter.

Police offered Mr Truscott a caution for the assault because of his previous good character and the low level of the offence.

Coun Reed said Lambeth Council’s legal director had written to the SLP's editor to complain and ask what disciplinary action the newspaper proposes to take.

Mr Truscott has now been moved from the Lambeth newsdesk to cover Southwark news stories.

The incident occurred during a night of entertainment, including a trip on the London Eye and cabaret entertainment, attended by councillors, senior council staff, and mayors from other London boroughs.

The £7,000 raised from proceeds will go towards Lambeth mayor Councillor Christopher Wellbelove’s chosen charities, Clapham Youth Centre, Trinity Hospice and Lambeth Women’s Aid.

Coun Wellbelove said the Veolia-sponsored night was still a great success. He said: “We had a fantastic time and a wonderful evening.“ Mr Truscott and the SLP declined to comment.