Theatres, clubs, marts, markets, hairdressers and bingo halls are among a list of businesses now closed as part of major new restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of Covid-19, as people are advised to work from home unless attendance in the workplace is absolutely essential.

The order came into force at midnight and will remain in place, along with previously announced restrictions, until at least April 19th.

The Government ordered yesterday that non-essential retail outlets are to close, while essential shops should implement strict physical distancing measures.

Those remaining open include food shops, pharmacies, hardware stores, post offices and credit unions.

All sporting events are cancelled, including those behind closed doors.

All playgrounds and caravan parks are closed, and all caf├ęs and restaurants are to operate on a take-away or deliver business.

People are also being asked to stay at home where possible and not meet outside in groups larger than four.

There's been some criticism of the decision to keep construction sites and factories open, but construction sites where safe distancing cannot be practised are being advised to close.

Last night, 204 new cases of coronavirus were announced along with one death, bringing the total number of fatalities in this country to seven.

Dublin has over half the number of cases at 535, followed by Cork with 123 cases or 13 percent.

As of the latest confirmed county figures, there are 35 confirmed cases in Co Galway, 9 cases in Mayo, 8 in Sligo and less than 5 in Co Roscommon.

Nationally, 29% of cases have been hospitalised with 36 people admitted to ICU.