There will be no more burials, at least for some time, in the commonly known Protestant cemetery in Rome, last resting place of the English poets Keats and Shelley. There is no more space in this popular and beautiful burial ground, which has served non-Catholic foreigners in Rome since the 18th century. Entombments can take place now only when a plot becomes vacant, which happens rarely even though each chamber is only leased for 30 years. In order to vacate a place the cemetery administration has to have the consent of the family member who is responsible for the plot. This can be difficult, even impossible, to obtain if the person has moved from Rome without leaving a contact address. Adding to the difficulties in the graveyard is the fact that many of the tombstones are now protected works of art and cannot be moved.
At present ashes will be only be accepted from families who already have a loved-one in the cemetery. Non-Catholics living in Rome who inquire about a burial place here are now being told that they should apply to the other cemeteries in the city.