The parents of a 14-year-old paperboy are keeping anxious vigil round his hospital bedside after a lorry crashed into him in Erith yesterday (March 13).

Cyclist Liam Fletcher suffered from serious head, spinal and leg injuries after being hit at the junction of Bridge Road and Northend Road at around 7.15am. He remains in a serious but stable condition.

His cousin James Budgen, from Chatham, described how Liam’s parents are keeping a constant vigil by his bedside at King’s College Hospital in Denmark Hill watching for vital signs of recovery.

Mr Budgen, 40, told the News Shopper:  “Liam’s a fighter. Doctors said they’ve seen people with less severe injuries pass away.

“He is aware of people around him in hospital but he’s calling them by their names as opposed to mum and dad. The doctors say that is due to the swelling on his brain.

“They say it a long process and they do not know how his brain will be affected.

“His parents, Graham and Mandy, have been there all night and they have other kids at home who are obviously in pieces.

“He has a broken femur which will be operated on this Sunday – they were going to do it today but they are going to wait for the swelling to go down.”

It is still unclear how the incident occurred and police closed off the A206 Northend Road for nearly the whole day collecting evidence.

Mr Budgen said: “Drivers complain about the road being closed off but if it happens to you or someone you know, you realise the importance of getting as much evidence as possible.

“At the moment Liam is not at all aware of how the accident happened at all.”

Mr Budgen revealed the family were touched at how people had rallied round to support the youngster.

He said: “Liam goes to Erith School and his friends have all been leaving lots of messages on his Facebook site.

“His parents are so grateful to everyone who has helped and he’s obviously in the best care at King’s College Hospital.

“Now we just have to wait and see.”

A Bexley Police spokesman said there had been no arrests in connection with the incident.

If you witnessed the accident call Bexley police on 101.

Did you see what happened? Call the newsroom on 01689 885 721.