Sheffield Geography student making it easier to find out who you're voting for….

Second-year BA Geography student Eleanor is helping to connect voters to candidates

Eleanor Holmshaw - geography student
Eleanor Holmshaw

A citizen initiative co-founded by Eleanor Holmshaw, a second-year BA Geography student, is operating for a third year - helping to connect voters to candidates standing in the Sheffield City Council elections on 4 May.  

The website '' enables city residents to identify who they can vote for and where candidates stand on key issues. It's politically neutral, surveying candidates on their political stances as well as giving people information about local elections - reminding voters they will need to take photographic ID with them to vote this year.

Eleanor says, “I co-founded WhoismyCouncillor? because I thought it was crazy you couldn't find information about candidates on Google.  By collecting information about candidates in Sheffield in one place, we hope to make it easier for voters to make informed decisions and feel active in their democratic engagement. Studying Geography, I'm particularly aware how huge inequalities in turnout are across racialised and marginalised groups, socio-economic status and the age divide. We want to do what we can to combat these inequalities, and make Sheffield a shining example of how democracy could be done well".

Ten out of the eleven political parties in Sheffield have participated and every candidate across all 28 wards has a ‘profile’ page. Over 50 candidates have completed the full survey - including information about them and their ideas, positions and priorities for the city.  Across 2021 and 2022 the site has had almost 70,000 page views

"This is an excellent example of the engagement taking place by students in the city, and providing a public good by giving people neutral and important information about the upcoming local elections. Eleanor and the other founders have put political geography in action, and it's a really impressive initiative to help strengthen local democracy in the city", says Dr Luke Temple, Lecturer in Political Geography.

Alongside The University of Sheffield the group have conducted research into what the project can reveal about Sheffield’s political landscape. They hope to continue this work to explore how inequalities in turnout across Sheffield can be addressed. 

Find the website here -

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