Evangelical 'Methodist' vicar of Bradford, he was born in St. Martin-in-the Fields parish, London, his father being a magistrate. Converted by Alexander Coates, an early Methodist preacher, he joined the society at West StreetTodmorden, Yorks, where he immediately became known to Wesley, their friendship continuing until Wesley's death. Subsequently he was appointed curate of Todmorden in the parish of Rochdale where William Grimshaw had previously been the curate. His next appointment was that of incumbent of White Chapel near Cleckheaton in the parish of Birstall, where he formed a close friendship with Mary Bosanquet of Cross Hall, Morley, in the adjacent parish of Batley. On her marriage to John Fletcher, Crosse for three months exchanged clerical duties with him.
In 1784 his father bought him the living of Bradford, where he had a highly respected and influential ministry, organising Methodist-style class meetings in his house. Nevertheless opposition from some of his Anglican friends led to him offering his services to Conference and Wesley's City Road Chapel. In later life he went blind. He died on 17 June 1816. A monument to his memory was erected in 1843 in Bradford parish church, now the cathedral.