Background and releaseEdit
Sheeran teased the lyrics and released a snippet of the song on his Twitter account on January 4, 2017. Along with Shape of You, the song was released on January 6, 2017.
GQ writer George Chesterton stated: " The first thing you notice about "The Castle On The Hill", the first of two new singles from Ed Sheeran's new album ÷ (Divide) is that it seems so much bigger in scope than anything he has done before. Sonically, it is a thumping stadium-filling anthem, but lyrically it showcases Ed's reflective side. One can assume much of ÷ deals with the trapping and traps of global fame and in "The Castle On The Hill" Sheeran is – at the tender age of 25 – already looking back at his childhood as a time of lost innocence." 
"Castle on the Hill" debuted at number two on the UK Singles Chart on 13 January, selling over 193,000 copies in its first week. Sheeran also debuted at number one with "Shape of You", making him the only artist in UK chart history to debut in the top two positions in the same week. "Castle on the Hill" debuted at number one on the Scottish Singles Chart behind "Shape of You". The song was certified silver in the first week due to selling over 200,000 units. The song remained at number two in its second week, selling over 100,000 units. The song debuted at number six on the Billboard Hot 100, selling 171,000 downloads and gaining 13 million streams in its debut week in the US. Sheeran also became the first artist to debut two songs in the top 10 in the history of the Hot 100, with "Shape of You" also debuting at number one.
The music video was released on January 23, 2017. It was directed by George Belfield.
The video features a group of adolescents living their youth with parallels being made to Sheeran's own youth. The scene frequently shifts to Sheeran driving along the country side and walking near the road's pathway. It ends with Sheeran being with his real friends, talking about their past.
Huffington Post writer Minou Clark stated: "What makes the video really authentic is the fact that Sheeran co-produced it, exclusively casting students from his old high school to appear alongside him." 
- Director: George Belfield
- Producer: Tom Gardner
- Cinematographer: Steve Annis
- Production company: Somesuch