A Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion chapel was built in 1774, but WM did not reach the city until 1790, when R.C. Brackenbury, after an overnight stay, preached from his carriage drawn up by the Market Cross. There is no evidence of a society being formed until 1804 when a local schoolmaster, William Woodroffe Phillips, registered a room in his house in North Pallant. Chichester became part of the Lewes and Brighton Mission and in 1810, with 12 members, was given its own missioner, though it did not become fully independent until 1815. The first chapel was built in East Walls in 1818 and rebuilt as Centenary Chapel in 1840. Stalwart leadership through the middle years of the century was given by William Ballard, landlord of the Dolphin Hotel, and his wife Maria, sister of Dr George Osborn. In 1877 the society moved to a new chapel in Southgate, designed by Alexander Lauder (replaced in 1982 by Christ Church United Church).
The first BC preacher, Mary Toms, came over from the Isle of Wight in 1833, and a missionary was appointed in 1834. Bethel chapel in Orchard Street opened in 1836. The Leng family provided leadership for many years and in 1865 a new Jubilee chapel was built in The Hornet (closed 1968).