John Wesley recorded no visit to this market town and small port in N. Devon, but in July 1745 met the evangelical vicar of St Gennys, George Thomson at neighbouring Fremington. In 1758 Charles Wesley came to visit his niece, Philadelphia (d. 1773), daughter of his brother Samuel, who married the local apothecary Thomas Earle. The first society was formed in 1787. Among the WM chapels designed by the local architect Alexander Lauder were Boutport Street (1869) and Newport Road (1911). The BC initially established themselves typically in the adjoining rural parish of Tawstock. Their 1895 Conference met in the Thorne Memorial chapel (1876, enlarged 1892) in Bear Street, named in memory ofJamesThorne.

  • J.G. Hayman, Methodism in North Devon (1871; supplement, 1900)