Lilydale Athenaeum. The Mechanics' Institute movement began in British urban industrial centres in the early 1800s. A "mechanic" was a person applying skills and technology. During the 19th century, most towns in Victoria established a Mechanics' Institute or Athenaeum with a library and meeting hall. Common objects were the "spread of useful knowledge" and provision for "rational recreation" in the community. This plaque, No. 5 in the MIV series, was unveiled on 22nd February 2004 by Richard Longmore, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Athenaeum Theatre Company in memory of Geoffrey Arch Page, Founding Director of the Athenaeum Theatre Company, to mark the restoration of the building.