A YOUNG boy is fighting for life in hospital after being hit by a car while attending a birthday party.
The 10-year-old, named locally as Harry, was hit by a car in Middle Park Way, Leigh Park, close to the junction with Thruxton Road.
He was outside playing as he and his parents attended a birthday barbecue at a nearby house.
Police are appealing for witnesses, but it is thought the boy ran out into the road between two parked cars.
The driver of the blue Mercedes stopped immediately as neighbours rushed out to help the boy, who was unconscious.
Derek Smith, 65, of Middle Park Way, said: ‘We heard a bang.
‘It was like someone slamming down the boot of a car hard.
‘I saw him lying in the road. My wife went over and looked after him for a while until the police came.
‘Apparently he ran out between the cars.
‘It was a good job the driver was going slowly.’
A member of the St John Ambulance was first to arrive at about 7.15pm on Sunday and tended to the boy until paramedics arrived.
The air ambulance landed in a field at Park Community School and the boy was flown to Southampton General Hospital for treatment to a serious head injury.
A neighbour, who did not want to be named, said: ‘The driver stopped straight away.
‘There were lots of people out there. Everyone was pretty shaken up.’
Steve Harrington, who runs Harrington Autos in Farlington, was having the barbecue at his house.
He said: ‘We did not see it. The first thing we knew, it had all happened.
‘We were just having a barbecue.
‘At the moment, we’re waiting for a phone call to see how he’s doing.’
The parents of the boy, from Waterlooville, were said to be distraught.
Police said the youngster remains in a critical but stable condition.
The close-knit community in Leigh Park is praying the boy will make a recovery.
Mr Smith added: ‘I feel sorry for the boy.’
The driver of the car, a 43-year-old man from Havant, was not injured.
Middle Park Way was closed for two hours while police examined the road.
Officers are keen for more information.
Sergeant Wayne Voller, of Fratton Roads Policing Unit, said: ‘I’d be interested in hearing from anyone who saw the collision, or either the car or the little boy just prior to it.
‘It’s been the source of some speculation, but at this stage it doesn’t seem as though the speed of the car was a factor in the cause of the crash.’
Call Sgt Voller on 101 if you can help.