A young cancer patient had the thrill of a lifetime when he met his musical idols at Sonisphere Festival.

Anthony Simons met thrash icons Metallica at the Knebworth rock festival on Friday and even got to watch them perform from backstage.

The 18-year-old who is undergoing chemotherapy every ten days for his condition, said: “It was brilliant to meet Metallica. I met and chatted to all of the band members. I asked drummer Kirk what it felt like to look out from stage to the massive crowd and was gobsmacked when he said I could see for myself and invited me to watch the show backstage. It made me feel important for the day.”

The day was organised by Gigs and Wigs, a free service run by Stevenage based charity Cancer Hair Care for teenagers and young adults to rebuild confidence and cope with hair loss.

“Seeing Ant have the confidence to talk with famous rock stars was fantastic,” charity founder Jasmin Gupta said. “This young man is facing a huge challenge to cope with his cancer treatment. He utterly deserves the opportunity to have a day where he is made to feels special. Metallica may look like four raging men on stage but the compassion and grace they showed Ant was inspiring.”

For more on the charity, which also runs a free hair clinic at Lister Hospital, go to www.cancerhaircare.com