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Weekend weather: Welcome dry spell to end as rain and gusts to sweep in

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Ireland is set to lose the dry, settled conditions that have seen thousands of families walking, cycling and jogging within 2km of their homes just to break the monotony of the Covid-19 lockdown.

Met Éireann warned that, from the weekend, unsettled conditions will sweep nationwide with a mixture of blustery winds and heavy rain showers.

Some areas may even experience flooding.

Met Éireann confirmed that March witnessed rainfall levels far below the monthly average in some areas.

Dublin witnessed just 57pc of normal March rainfall levels while, in contrast, Newport in Mayo received 26pc more rain than average.

It also proved a much colder March than normal - with Markree in Co Sligo and other parts of Ireland being on average 1.1C below normal average monthly values.

The coldest temperature last month was recorded at Dunsany, Co Meath, with an icy -4.2C. In contrast, the highest temperature last month was recorded at Casement Aerodrome in Dublin with a balmy 16.5C.

Remarkably, all sunshine levels were above average last month - ranging from 20pc above normal at Knock, Co Mayo, to an astonishing 55pc at Johnstown Castle in Wexford.

It came as unsettled conditions will sweep over Ireland this weekend.

Met Éireann's Paul Downes said that while today will see some sunny spells, particularly in the Dublin and east coast area, there will be patches of light rain. "Saturday will be dry in most areas with a good deal of cloud," he said.

However, tomorrow night will see heavy rain spreading from Munster and west Connacht.

"Sunday will be a mild and blustery day with outbreaks of rain in the west and south-west spreading eastwards as the day goes on," he added.

"The rain will be heavy at times, especially in western and southern counties, with a risk of localised flooding."

Next week will prove changeable with a mixture of rain and spells of sunshine.

Irish Independent