Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

11.46 10 Mar 2020


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Trinity College is to temporarily move lectures online and close a number of indoor spaces at its Dublin city centre campus over coronavirus concerns.

From tomorrow, all lectures will be delivered online for the rest of the semester - but tutorials, seminars and lab practicals will continue on campus "while using social distancing protocols".

Indoor spaces such as the Long Room (which houses the Book of Kells), the Science Gallery and Douglas Hyde Gallery are to be shut for now.

That decision is effective from 1pm today.

The Book of Kells is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Dublin, bringing around one million visitors to the campus each year.

In a statement, the college said: "Both of these measures are being taken in the interests of the health and well-being of our students and staff and to decrease any potential impacts on the larger community.

"The decisions are based on the concept of social distancing which has been recommended by many experts.

"Our goal is to decrease the number of instances that lead to students, staff, and visitors coming together in large groups in close proximity with each other."

The university notes that "further actions" may be needed.

Trinity case

It was confirmed last week that Trinity had been informed of a case of coronavirus on campus - one of the 24 cases that have now been confirmed in the Republic.

While some rooms on campus were closed as a precaution, the university had otherwise been operating as normal.

In an update on Sunday, Trinity College said the individual who was diagnosed has made a good recovery and there had been no other confirmed case at the university.

However, any student or staff member returning to Ireland from high-risk areas are being asked to stay away from college for two weeks.

A launch of Trinity's strategic plan for the next five years was live-streamed today, with the physical event cancelled to avoid bringing a large number of people together due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

Other measures

Elsewhere, the FAI says the Republic of Ireland's Euro 2020 play-off match against Slovakia on March 26th will now be played behind closed doors.

The decision has been made on "the instruction of the Slovakian government", the association says.

In a statement, the FAI said: "The decision has just been relayed to the Football Association of Ireland by the Slovakian FA following a directive from their government.

"All fans who purchased tickets for the game in Bratislava will be refunded."

Meanwhile, DCU today told post-graduate students that spring graduation ceremonies have been postponed for "a range of factors" including the coronavirus situation.

It said the event would have involved "significant travel for graduates and their families" - including some international travel to Ireland.

Main image: File photo of the Long Room at Trinity College in Dublin. Picture by: RollingNews.ie

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