BNP leader Nick Griffin has said he will not attend a garden party hosted by Buckingham Palace.

The politician was invited by fellow BNP member Richard Barnbrook, but has said he has “no wish to embarrass the Queen”.

He was to be the guest of Barnbrook, who was invited due to his position as a London Assembly member. Last week, he confirmed he would be attending with Griffin as his guest.

Barnbrook was warned his invitation could be withdrawn if he did not select another guest.

Speaking outside the Houses of Parliament today, Griffin said his party could have garnered a “great deal of publicity” by attending the event but did not want to embarrass the monarch.

The BNP have come under fire this week for using an image of former prime minister Winston Churchill in a political broadcast.

Conservative MP Nicolas Soames, who is Churchill’s grandson, said the wartime leader would have been “appalled” at the party’s politics.

He said he had asked the elections watchdog to intervene. Earlier this year, the party used images of Jesus in its promotional material, to the disgust of gay and lesbian Christian groups.

This weekend, the party’s website was temporarily offline in a reported distributed denial of service.

Deputy leader Simon Darby implied that anti-fascist group Searchlight were responsible, while Griffin claimed it was the “largest cyber attack in recorded history”.

According to the BNP, MI5 and the Counter Terrorism Unit at Scotland Yard have been informed.

A Searchlight spokesman told TheRegister.co.uk that it had nothing to do with the hack.

He said: “We’re amused and honoured at the suggestion but this wasn’t actually our doing.”