Opposition Leader Keir Starmer called the apology “pathetic” and “worthless”.
“I know millions of people across this country have made extraordinary sacrifices over the past 18 months,” Mr Johnson told the Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday.
“I know the anguish they went through, unable to mourn their loved ones, unable to live their lives the way they want or do the things they love.
“And I know the rage they feel against me and the government I lead when they think that downing Street itself the rules are not being properly followed by the people making the rules.
“And while I couldn’t anticipate the conclusions of the ongoing investigation, I learned enough to know that there were things we just didn’t understand and that I need to take responsibility for. . “
The email from the Prime Minister’s Private Secretary, Martin Reynolds, went out to dozens of people and urged attendees to “bring their own alcohol”.
The event was scheduled for May 20, 2020 – the same day the government, in a televised press conference, reminded people that they can only meet one person outside of their home.
In Britain’s first lockdown, which began in March 2020 and lasted for more than two months, gatherings were banned with a few exceptions, including work and funerals.
Millions of people have been cut off from friends and family, and even prevented from visiting dying relatives in hospitals.
On the day of the garden party, 268 people with coronavirus died in Britain, official figures show, bringing the total of deaths to over 36,000. The total now stands at over 150,000, the toll the highest in Europe after Russia.