In 1808 the Methodist lay preacher, Hugh Bourne was expelled from the movement. Bourne and his 200 or so followers became known as Primitive Methodists. Bourne adopted the name from a statement that had been made by John Wesley in 1790: "I still remain a primitive Methodist." Bourne's followers were also called Ranters.
Bourne built his first Primitive Methodist Chapel in Tunstall in 1811. By 1842 membership had increased to nearly 80,000 with 500 travelling evangelists and more that 1,200 chapels. Membership continued to grow and by 1875 had reached 165,410. Unlike the Wesleyan Methodists, the Primitive Methodists encouraged women evangelists. They also provided many leaders of the trade union movement in the late 19th century.