Iron Maiden have been announced as the first headliners for next year’s Download Festival to be held at Donington Park, Leicestershire. The festival appearance is their only confirmed UK gig during their 2016 world tour, which is set to begin in the US next February.

Iron Maiden The Book Of SoulsIron Maiden will headline Download 2016.

The festival will take place from June 10th to 12th, with the band scheduled to take the main stage on the closing night. The band’s frontman Bruce Dickinson has recently been given the all clear from cancer, after undergoing a seven-week course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy for a cancerous tumour on his tongue.

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Dickinson, who is also a licensed pilot, will be transporting the band, their crew and equipment, around the world on his 747-400 jumbo jet, named Ed Force One, during their upcoming Book of Souls World Tour. Dickinson will then land the plane at East Midlands airport on June 12th, before their Download performance.

Speaking about what the festival means to the band Dickinson said, “Download is a very special place for us. Not just because it’s always great to play on home turf but because there’s a truly unique vibe there. It’s the very heart of England and of metal, so a fitting place for Iron Maiden.”

“We haven’t decided on the set list as yet and won’t until we start rehearsing but we really look forward to playing a number of new songs live, especially as the recording was so much live. However, as it’s been a while since we saw you all, I am sure we will include plenty of older fan favourites too,”

“I think the fans will be delighted by what we have in mind. We are also in the middle of creating the new show and rest assured we are working hard to bring you all something spectacular, something with a lot of heart. You certainly deserve it for your patience.”

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It will be the third time the band have headlined the festival and the appearance will follow on from a successful year which saw their album The Book of Souls, debut at number one in the UK album chart and also take the top spot in more than 40 other countries.