THE Circus Tavern is hosting a heavy metal feast next month.

Metal Wave UK will be the first heavy metal festival of its kind in the south east of England and will feature numerous 1970s and 1980s metal heroes.

Dennis Stratton, the former Iron Maiden guitarist, will be playing a classic Maiden set to headline the show along with melodic hard- rockers Praying Mantis, who formed in the mid-1970s.

Also on the bill are West Midlands rockers Cloven Hoof, who have played across Europe, Deep Machine, Headrush, Midnight Messiah and Snake Eyes.

Another of the night’s top acts is Essex band Chariot.

They enjoyed a fair amount of success in the 1980s with a European tour and sell-out show at the Marquee in London.

Singer, songwriter and rhythm guitarist Pete Franklin went on tour with Iron Maiden when Chariot split up, but they have recently reformed and are now working on their sixth studio album.

Pete said: “Being back on stage with the lads is great we’re not under any pressure like it was back then, it’s more relaxed and we’re seeing new faces coming to our gigs as well as our life long fans.”

The Metal Wave festival takes place on Saturday, October 5. In addition to a string of top seventies and eighties metal bands, DJs the Metal Priestess and Pitbull are also appearing, as is co-organiser and heavy metal journalist Malcom Dome.

It was he who coined the term “thrash metal”.

For tickets and more information, visit n THE Circus Tavern raised £1,160 for Essex Air Ambulance during the Masters of Darts event.

In front of a packed crowd at the Tavern, the final was won by James Wade.

He beat Terry Jenkins 5-4 and was presented with the trophy by James Dray from John Smiths, the event’s sponsor.