FIFTEEN-year-old Charlie Lenehan has received a hero’s welcome back to school after coming third in Saturday’s Britain’s Got Talent final.
As one half of singing act Bars and Melody, the Frampton Cotterell schoolboy has appeared on countless television programmes, radio shows and in national magazines following their success in this year’s series. But nothing could prepare him for his return to school at Winterbourne International Academy on Monday.
“Nobody expected me back at school that quickly,” Charlie told the Gazette this week. “I didn’t tell anyone I was coming back and it was really good. I was mobbed by about 100 Year 7 and 8 pupils.
“Everyone has been really supportive. All the teachers have been really good, if it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t have been able to take the time off for the show.”
The teenager, who lives at home with mum Karen, 38, and his eight-year-old sister Brooke, said his time on Britain’s Got Talent had been ‘amazing’.
“It was such a good experience,” said Charlie. “It has opened up a lot of doors for us.
“I was very nervous for the final, there was a lot of pressure, but we treated it like all the other shows and wanted to get out there and enjoy ourselves - that was the main thing.”
Charlie, who sings the melodies alongside rapper friend Leondre Devries, 13, only took up singing four years ago.
“All my friends said I could sing,” he said. “Music and drama are my favourite subjects but I only started singing in music lessons in Year 7 and then I did a school concert.
“I met Leondre on Facebook in September last year and it went from there.”
In their first audition the pair received Simon Cowell’s golden buzzer, putting them straight through to the live finals, and despite coming third are hotly tipped to win a recording contract with the music mogul.
“I am happy with the position we came in,” said Charlie. “Acts that don’t win on these programmes often go on to do really well.
“We have such a big following now on Facebook and Instagram but it is a waiting game at the moment.
“I hope I carry on with Bars and Melody and I definitely want to have a career in music as that is the thing I like to do best.
“We have a few things in mind and need to sit down and think about what we do next.”
Friends of the well spoken young star said they cried watching him on the show.
Chloe Moore, 14, said: “I knew he was auditioning and told everyone to watch it. I knew how well he had done but watching it was just crazy. I can’t get over it.”
She added: “He was a lot more polite and mature on TV. He is hyper 24/7 at the moment and lessons are not normal, he keeps getting calls all the time. We are very proud of him.”
Academy assistant principal Natalie Wilcox said: “It has been really nice watching the programme and we are all very proud of the way Charlie conducted himself on TV. He is a cheeky lad but also very grounded.
“Obviously it has been really exciting and there has been a lot of excitement surrounding his return. Goodness knows what it would have been like if he had won.
“We wish him well as we wait to hear what happens next.”