A severe weather watch was issued for the Bay of Plenty today, warning of heavy rain during Friday.

The severe weather watch was issued by MetService and included the Bay of Plenty and Rotorua.

Rain finally began falling this evening after ominous clouds built up during the day. It was warm and muggy out with a high of 19 degrees and 89 per cent humidity with gusty north-easterlies.

Heavy blankets could be pushed to the end of the bed tonight, as the overnight low was predicted to be 16 degrees.

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Keep umbrellas handy for tomorrow as rain was expected to continue, more steadily than today. MetService has predicted tomorrow would be warmer during the day, with a high of 20 degrees, but cooler overnight, with a low of 13 degrees.

Winds were also expected to die down in the afternoon.

Looking to the weekend, the warmer temperatures would continue with a high of 19 on Saturday and 18 on Sunday. Nighttime temperatures were expected to dip to 9 degrees for both days.

Saturday was expected to be mainly fine, with cloud increasing and possible late showers on Sunday.