In Porter's Guide to Blackpool, Fleetwood, Lytham, etc. of 1871, the church was described as "a plain brick edifice, with a low embattled tower, and destitute of any architectural beauty". The churchyard was closed to burials in 1873, when Layton Cemetery was completed, about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) away. To cope with a growing congregation, it was decided to replace the church with a larger building. The smaller church of 1821 was demolished in 1877 and building of the new church commenced immediately. The foundation stone was laid by Blackpool's first mayor, Dr William Cocker, who had donated £1000 towards the cost of the construction. The building was completed in 1878.
St John's was designated a Grade II listed building on 20 October 1983. After 100 years of use, the church was in need of repair and restoration work was carried out in 1986. Further renovation took place between 2000 and 2006 at a cost of £1.6 million. A community and conference centre were built, as well as a dedicated area for the homelessness charity Streetlife.
The inside of the church now features a modern, comfortable worship space with several other rooms created around it.
There is also a small heritage centre (pictured) open most days.