The British National Party no longer exists as an official political party. The Electoral Commission has removed the far-right nationalist party from its register.
The BNP failed to confirm its registration details with the Commission, which is something all political parties are required to do annually by law:
The Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (PPERA) requires all registered political parties to:
• Submit an annual notification confirming that the details they have registered with the Commission remain accurate; and
• Pay a re-registration fee of £25.
The last date a notification can be submitted to the Commission is six months after the deadline for submission of a party’s statement of accounts.
The BNP missed its confirmation deadline, so the Electoral Commission has removed it from its register. This means that BNP candidates are not allowed to use the party’s name, logo, or any other kind of BNP-specific branding on ballot papers in upcoming elections. It is allowed to re-register though, which it intends to do, according to its Twitter feed:
Lots of media coverage over a small clerical error from a party that is supposed to be dead in the water. Re-registering now with the EC.
— BritishNationalParty (@bnp) January 8, 2016
Since its peak in popularity, when it threatened to seize control in Barking in 2010, the BNP has rapidly plummeted from public consciousness. Its notorious leader, Nick Griffin, stood down in July 2014, and was expelled from the party in October of the same year when he was accused of causing “disunity” and “harrassing” BNP staff. He had previously lost his seat as an MEP, and been declared bankrupt. The party has long been set back by infighting and its failure to establish unity, as well as its lack of structure.
Losing its position as a registered political party is the cumination of the BNP’s drastic decline over recent years, compounded by its vote collapsing in May 2014’s European elections, when Griffin lost his seat.