This is all hearsay, so take it with the same pinch of salt that I'm taking it with.
There has been a fire in East Dagenham, apparently there is some form of “residue” from the fire and police have evacuated all residents in several blocks radius. There was no “get your toothbrush”, it was “you are coming with us now!” The residents are now being looked after, possibly in quarantine, in a number of hotels.
East Dagenham is rather well known for having lots of nasty chemicals in the soil, and a long history of the use of asbestos – so it is likely that this is the reason why these steps have been taken. I'll try and find out more in the next couple of days.
This whole story ccomes from a friend of my brother, who is caught up in the whole thing.