IT'S all change as tube stations in Waltham Forest undergo a much needed face-lift.

More plans for major improvements at Leyton, Leytonstone, Walthamstow Central and Blackhorse Road, were unveiled when Tim O'Toole, London Under-ground's managing director toured the stations. Improve-ments in the pipeline include step-free access at Leyton Station and re-opening the Langthorne Road entrance.

Cyclists already benefiting from a secure bike shed in Church Lane car park at Leytonstone Station, can look forward to the removal of a bench outside the station in a bid to cut down street crime.

New CCTV cameras, better signage, PA equipment and re-decoration plus new lifts from overground to underground, are all earmarked for Walthamstow Central.

Tube and train passengers will have the chance to go up in the world once the escalators at Blackhorse Road station have been renewed.

An extra 200 British Transport Police officers have been recruited to patrol trains and help station staff tackle ticket touts. Additional peak time trains between Leyton and Leytonstone and central London are already on line, with further improvements planned for more off-peak trains next year.

During his visit Mr O'Toole said: "Transport for London is investing £10bn over the next five years to improve and expand London's transport network, and more than half of that will be spent on the tube."

Cllr Clyde Loakes, leader of the council, said: "The council is pushing forward plans for regeneration, but we need to continue to work with partners such as London Under-ground and TfL to make sure investment really benefits local people." The improvement plan is scheduled to run from 2006 to 2010.