He was educated at Saltash and Plymouth.
Smith became a partner in his father"s firm of Bickford, Smith, & Company and lived near the factory at Camborne. There was another factory at Saint Helen"s Junction, Lancashire, and Smith was also chairman of Helston Railway. He was also captain in the 15th Cornwall Rifle Volunteers and Justice of the Peace for Cornwall.
Bickford-Smith purchased the Trevarno Estate, at Helston, Cornwall in 1874 and set about developing the gardens.
In 1882 he funded the construction of the Bickford-Smith Institute and clock tower at Porthleven which was built as a scientific and literary institute including a lending and reference library. In 1886 he was re-elected as a Liberal Unionist and held the seat until he stood down at the 1892 general election.
Bickford-Smith married Margaret Leaman Venning in 1852. They were staunch Methodists.
He died at the age of 71, in 1899.
23rd United Kingdom Parliament. 24th United Kingdom Parliament]
Bickford-Smith was elected at the 1885 general election as the Member of Parliament (Member of Parliament) for Truro.