WJ Gilson, the foundation principal of Lilydale Adventist Academy, first suggested the need for a Seventh-day Adventist boarding school on the eastern seaboard of Australia in the early 1940's. However, it was not until the late 1950's that the project gained momentum. A suitable 48 acre property was located in the Lilydale area. Originally the property was part of the Mitchell estate and was built by the sister of Dame Nellie Melba. Located on the property was the caretaker's cottage set in lovely green lawns. This cottage remains a feature of the Academy campus.
Building of Lilydale Adventist Academy's facilities commenced in 1963. The builder, Mr. Crabb, and his team, worked tirelessly to complete the school facilities in time for the commencement of the school year on February 10, 1964. In operation at the commencement of the 1964 school year were school administration and classroom facilities, and a boy's dormitory. At the same time, four staff homes were constructed on the property by Mr. Stoneman and Mr. Epps. The girl's dormitory was added and in operation at the commencement of the 1966 school year. Subsequent building projects have included: cafeteria, student chapel, Art and Technology facility, Science facility, assembly hall, and gymnasium.
Recent developments have been the construction of Edinburgh Adventist Primary School and the Edinburgh Early Learning Centre providing continuity of education for 2 year olds through to Year 12. Refurbishment of the Science Labs, and more recently the Art and Technology facility and a new Library Resource Centre provides excellent educational opportunities. Lilydale Adventist Academy is currently poised for further development of its facilities to meet the learning needs of students in the 21st century.