Why Dick Whittington is no longer looking to London to seek his fortune

Virtually every traditional children’s nursery rhyme sung in crèches across the land has its origins in a gruesome medieval tale of woe – Ringa Rosie is an early warning system for bubonic plague symptoms; London Bridge is Falling Down stems from a brutal Viking attack; and Mary Mary Quite Contrary is an account of the otherwise charming Queen Mary’s tendency for homicidal rages.