Black Sabbath have been crowned the most important British hard rock act of all time in a poll carried out by the BPI of more than 3,600 hard rock/metal fans.
The Birmingham-born heavy metalers bagged almost half of the votes (45%). Iron Maiden and Led Zeppelin came in second - each taking one fifth of the votes.
Seventy five percent of the polled music fans voted Britain as the home of Metal, with two thirds (67.3%) praising Britain as a “world force” in the genre.
Three out of four fans believe that Britain is still producing great artists, with Sheffield’s While She Sleeps the act most hotly tipped for future success.
The survey – carried out partly in conjunction with Kerrang! and Metal Hammer – found that 40% of heavy music fans discovered it before their teenage years.
Metallica’s self-titled 1991 album was voted the album metal fans would recommend as the ideal introduction to the genre.