The group do a one hour set, despite denials they were playing...

METALLICA appeared at this weekend’s DOWNLOAD FESTIVAL – despite organisers claiming they would not play live.

The band flew into nearby East Midlands Airport yesterday afternoon (June 1) for a surprise performance.

Despite attempts to keep the set secret, almost everyone on site was aware of their presence. The band finally appeared at 3:30pm on the Scuzz Stage, where they played a greatest hits set, and two new songs in their one hour slot.

On Friday, organisers had flatly denied Metallica, who last played in the UK in 1999, would appear.

A statement said: “We are huge Metallica fans at Download and would be honoured to have them performing at our festival. However, they are not playing at Download. We gather a rumour was started when we added Apocalyptica to the bill earlier this week.”

Metallica‘s new album ‘St Anger’ is released on June 5.