Adele who dominated The Grammy's, America's equivalent of the Brit awards, this month is an inspiration for pupils at her old school in Balham.

The singer sensation scooped six awards, including album of the year and best song, at the spectacular in Los Angeles, sharing the limelight with tributes to Whitney Houston, who died the previous night.

This week her former deputy headteacher at Chestnut Grove school praised her achievements and predicted further success at this week's Brit Awards.

Dominic Bergin, told how Adele was just a "normal school girl" when she attended Chesnut Grove, though he never would have guessed she was destined for superstardom.

He said: "She is very popular and if you mention her in school everyone goes ‘Oh, what did she go here?’. Kids like talent and although she is a bit mainstream for some of the students at Chestnut Grove if I went into a class now and asked who liked Adele I would get a good response."

At the Grammy's Adele, 23, picked up the album of the year award, best song, best pop vocal for "Rolling in the Deep", record of the year, song of the year, best video and best solo pop performance for "Someone Like You"

She has also been nominated for best female artist, best album and best single at the Brits.

Mr Bergin said: "I remember her being a bit grungy at school. She used to wear big canvas late-nineties grunge trousers.

"She was just a very nice girl. My wife Claudette used to teacher her English and said she was kind, hard-working, motivated and academically able.

"My wife and I bumped into her in Covent Garden three years ago, maybe after her first album came out, and she ran over and gave my wife a hug."

Adele left Chestnut Grove at age 13 to join the Brit School, but the students at Chestnut Grove still see her success is inspiration.

Student Teresha Murry-Smith, 15, said: "I knew she went to this school and see her as an inspiration because she makes me sing and I can’t sing. I like singing when I listen to her songs."