GOLF clubs, courses and facilities have been forced to close, following the latest advice issued by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Mr Johnson ordered a lockdown - urging people to stay at home - during a statement broadcast on Monday night.

All non-essential shops, places of worship and playgrounds are to close and all gatherings of more than two people are to stop, he said.

In response, England Golf revealed that all golf clubs, courses and facilities must now close.

In a statement, the governing body for amateur golf in England said: "It is England Golf’s position that this deeply regrettable, but highly necessary and responsible course of action, must be implemented with immediate effect and be maintained until further notice.

"The government has identified an urgent need to introduce new restrictions on public life and on non-essential businesses opening their doors.

"This has been done to limit the spread of the coronavirus and relieve the growing pressure on our National Health Service.

"Keeping golf courses open is simply no longer compatible with the updated policy of government which is designed to save lives in a time of national emergency.

"The health and wellbeing of the nation is the only consideration that matters at this moment in our history.

"These are incredibly testing times for the country.

"The golf industry cannot be shielded from the economic and social ramifications caused by this temporary shutdown of normal life.

"We would like to assure the golfing community that England Golf staff will continue to work remotely with all affiliated golfers, clubs and counties to try and minimise the damage caused by this suspension of regular golf club life.

"We will continue to signpost clubs and counties to the latest government advice and schemes designed to help the economy cope with the disruption caused by coronavirus."

England Golf are are one of the country’s largest sports governing bodies and look after the interests of around 1,900 golf clubs and 630,000 men, women, boy and girl club members.