Opened by Queen Elizabeth in 1969, Radio City Tower has seen its fair share of highs and lows over the past half century.

It became a Buck Rogers space-style restaurant in 1983 – and closed altogether for most of the 1990s.

The tower was only rescued in 1999 when it was refurbished at a cost of £5 million and re-launched as Radio City 96.7 in August 2000.

Pat O’Connor and David Lewis at the St. John’s Beacon topping out ceremony, March 1967

Pat O’Connor and David Lewis at the St. John’s Beacon topping out ceremony, March 1967

Construction work on St. John’s Beacon, as it was formerly known, started at the Houghton Street site in 1965. The builders were the Scott Wilson Group.

The foundations were dug 40ft below the street surface to a diameter of 60ft in diameter.

A concrete tapering shaft slowly took shape over the next 18 months, rising to a summit of 486ft including the antenna spire.

The crow’s nest structure, whose top floor reaches 453ft, was added once the central pillar had been completed. It included a revolving restaurant and observation platform.

John Jones looks out over Lime Street station, March 1967

John Jones looks out over Lime Street station, March 1967

For the energetic, there are 558 stairs up to the observation deck. The two lifts make the journey in 30 seconds.

Originally a 70ft mast was planned for the top of the tower, but was dropped from the design during construction.

Earlier proposals envisaged a much thinner tower with multi-floored galleries at the top – described as being a bit like a lollipop on a cocktail stick!

Fortunately, they never made it off the drawing board.

The tower as we know it today was officially topped out on March 15th 1967. Our photo shows project team members Pat O’Connor, left, and David Lewis enjoying a swift pint in celebration!

Tower hostesses Cherrie Threthewy, Jackie Downes and Pat Kelly, March 1971

Tower hostesses Cherrie Threthewy, Jackie Downes and Pat Kelly, March 1971

The views over Liverpool were unparalleled, even at the building stage. In our second image, John Jones gazes out over the expansive roof of Lime Street station.

Hostesses welcomed guests to the tower during its heyday in the early 1970s and showed them to its restaurant and observation deck.

Smartly attired in their new uniforms in our photo are, from left, Cherrie Threthewy, Jackie Downes and Pat Kelly.

In April 1977, the tower became a focal point of Liverpool’s celebrations for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee when a sponsored abseil was launched from the viewing platform.

Ken Dodd releases balloons for the Red Cross with the tower in background, April 1993

Ken Dodd releases balloons for the Red Cross with the tower in background, April 1993

Customers, waitresses and chefs watched from the restaurant level as around 18 people made their way to the ground on a bright, sunny day.

The first restaurant in the crow’s nest closed down for health and safety reasons in 1979, but re-opened in the 1980s. Its final incarnation was the Buck Rogers restaurant in 1983.

When that shut its doors due to lack of business, the tower lay empty for 12 years. The only activity was the fitting of blue neon lights to the tower’s perimeter in 1994.

But even in its dormant years, the tower still loomed large over the city.

Lasers shine poppies on the tower to mark the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, November 2018

Lasers shine poppies on the tower to mark the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day, November 2018

It formed the backdrop to Ken Dodd’s Red Cross charity ‘Buskaround’ in April 1993 when hundreds of balloons were released to rise above the height of the vacant structure.

The neon lights were quickly stripped away in 1999 when Radio City took over the tower. The revolving restaurant was locked in place and became offices for the radio station.

Moving right up to the present, lasers shone poppies on to the tower in November 1918 to mark the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day.