The city council has laid down new regulations for the Caldarroste the roast chestnut sellers in Romes historic centre. Traditionally the chestnut sellers sit in winter beside their low, red-hot braziers, rolling the delicious smelling nuts on a perforated tray over hot coals. They sell the cooked chestnuts a few at a time in thick, brown-paper hand-made cones. When the "Caldarroste" arrive you know that winter is on its way; slowly the scene has changed and now there are chestnut sellers on every famous street corner all year round. But not for much longer.
From now on the council has ruled that only chestnut sellers with a licence will be permitted to work in the historic centre. They will be given a fixed pitch for their picturesque braziers and only be allowed to sell from the end of September until the end of March.
The new regulations have upset sellers because licences are difficult to obtain. Recently 49 applications were made for one licence; 19 of the applications were completed correctly, but only eight licences were granted. A Save the Chestnut Sellers committee has been formed and pamphlets are being printed asking the public to protest and the council to protect the jobs of the street vendors.