Clifton House was originally opened in 1774 as a poor house run by the Charitable Society. The extensions were badly needed by the growing city when they were opened in 1872 (BCS). The funding came from brothers Edward and George Benn. “This and the corresponding wing were erected by Edward Benn Esq. of Glenravel House and presented to the Belfast Charitable Society 1872.” Glenravel estate was in the Antrim glens; there used to be a Glenravel Street just west of Clifton House (where the motorway now is).
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