Founded 1812
All members are free to attend any or all activities. (For some events advance booking is necessary - these are where catering is involved, or when numbers are limited.)

Library - Local studies, general nonfiction, reference section, Devonshire Association Transactions, Plymouth Institute Transactions, Plymouth Athenaeum Proceedings, Athenaeum archive, and periodicals. Some valuable books and documents are held by the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office.

Art Group - Tuesday and Thursday mornings weekly. These are not classes. Members study the arts of landscape, flower painting and portraiture using various media.
Art exhibitions are held in the lounge.

Discussions - Wednesday afternoons, monthly. A wide range of relevant subjects are discussed. Controversial politics and religion are avoided.

The pleasure of books - An informal gathering of members who enjoy books, talking about books and listening to talks on books. We share those we have enjoyed and sometimes follow a theme.

Music - Fortnightly on Friday afternoons 1½hours of recorded music, often themed.
Classical and other.

Play reading - Monthly on Friday afternoons, unrehearsed. Well known and less well known plays. Members participate, or just listen.

Lectures and talks - Fortnightly on Tuesday afternoons and some Thursday evenings. These cover a wide range of subjects, some being of local interest.

Photographic Society - Monday evenings.The emphasis is on digital photography. Advice, help and instruction are willingly given.
Exhibitions are held in the lounge.

Light lunches - Monthly on Fridays,

Coffee mornings - Most Wednesdays from 10.30am. Non members are welcome.

Buffet and entertainment - On the first Thursday evening each May to commemorate the opening of the Athenaeum building in 1819. This, with its museum, library and lecture hall was destroyed in the 1941 blitz. The present building is on the same, albeit smaller, site.
A conversazione, usually an evening in September, to launch the new programme.

The auditorium - This has seating for 340. It is available for hire for meetings, conferences, etc.

Film shows - These are held monthly.

Writer's group - This meets weekly on Monday evenings.