A 16-year-old girl is in a critical condition in a Norfolk hospital after she crashed her moped while riding to the gym.

Portia Buck was just months away from beginning a scholarship at the British Racing School in Newmarket to become a jockey when she was involved in the accident, which has left her fighting for her life.

The "funny" and "outgoing" teenager, from East Harling, is now on a ventilator at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital having undergone 16 hours of surgery, with her mother describing her situation as "touch and go".

The accident happened at 4.55pm on Wednesday, October 5, in Hargham Road, Snetterton North End, while she was heading to her gym in Attleborough.

She was involved in an accident with a car and knocked from her moped. A former solider and an off-duty nurse were passing the scene and stopped to help until paramedics arrived. The air ambulance was also called, and took her to the N&N.

Andrea Buck, Portia's mother, said: "I can't put it into words. Her injuries are life-changing. The doctors are doing everything they can."

Surgeons have carried out skin and muscle grafts on Portia's right leg, but she is now suffering from respiratory difficulties.

"The problem we have at the moment is that she has an acute respiratory issue, which they think is due to the overwhelming trauma to her body," Ms Buck, 40, added.

"She is very unwell and they may have to transport her to the Royal Papworth Hospital [in Cambridgeshire]. We are just waiting to see how she responds."

Portia, a former army cadet based in Attleborough, had recently returned from Sri Lanka where she had spent a month this summer volunteering and teaching in a local school.

Ms Buck said her daughter always "pushes herself" and "gives her everything" to whatever she sets her mind to.

Now, the mother-of-five is hoping that Portia can find the strength to make it through her current ordeal.

"Portia is a fighter and she is fighting hard," Ms Buck added.

Following her daughter's accident, Ms Buck has also been forced to temporarily close her business, the East Harling Bakery, which only opened its doors last month, so she can spend time with Portia.

With no other source of income, a gofundme page has been set up to help support the family during this difficult time.

Ms Buck said: "I’m a single mum and I have no source of income but I can't worry about that right now.

"I just want to say thank you. I’m not good at accepting handouts but now is not the time to be proud.

"I am so appreciative for all of the help, support and messages that I have been sent.

"It just helps take the weight off, knowing I can buy food and pay the bills."

To donate visit Portia's gofundme page here, https://www.gofundme.com/f/portia-buck-recovery-fund.