The town developed rapidly in the late nineteenth century, following the building of the docks in the 1860s. Its residents included well-to-do families, and holiday-makers were also attracted to the town.
Methodism seems to have been pioneered by Peter Bethell, a town missioner, and a church was opened in Arcott Street in 1864. This was partially destroyed by fire in 1898 and was succeeded by Albert Road church in 1907, in which the Cory family were prominent. Meanwhile, as the southern end of the town developed, a tin chapel was taken over in 1890 on the site of the present Trinity. A dual-purpose schoolroom was opened in 1897 and the present Trinity Church came into use in 1901. Its early ministers included W.Russell Maltby (1895-1898) and Robert Bond (1902-1905, 1908-1911). The Gibbs and Morel families were prominently involved in its life.
The UMFC had a chapel in Pill Street, Cogan.