Jolyon Attwooll – The Telegraph - 30 Dec 2011
Officials at the Colosseum ruins in Rome have confirmed that the popular attraction will remain open to tourists as normal, despite reports of damage to the structure earlier in the week.
The Italian news agency Ansa reported that pieces of the 2000-year-old amphitheatre, regarded as one of the most impressive feats of architecture in the Roman Empire, had fallen on Christmas Day, as well as on Tuesday .
However, the director of the Colosseum, Rossella Rea, was quick to downplay the sighting, while the culture ministry also insisted that "nothing had collapsed since the 18th century."
When contacted by Telegraph Travel, officials at the Colosseum said the attraction was open as normal and that there were no plans to close.
An employee at the Rome Tourist Board also said the site was safe to visit.
The Colosseum, which costs €12 (£10) to enter, attracts up to two million tourists each year and is one of the most visited sites in the city, second only to the Vatican.
A restoration project on the structure, which used to seat 50,000 spectators in Imperial Roman times, is due to take place in spring 2012.