Time changes: some London scenes do not (as I discovered today).
In the old days one of the surest signs of winter in London was straw in the 'buses; but there is not much of it now. The chestnut roasters, however, remain: still as certain harbingers of the winter as the swallows are of the summer. At the street corners you see their merry little furnaces glowing through the peep-holes, and if you will, and are not ashamed, you may fill your pockets with two-pennyworth, and thus, at a ridiculously small expenditure, provide yourself with food and hand-warmers in one.
E. V. Lucas. The Wanderer in London. September 1906.