Florence Welch originally wrote this tune while battling homesickness on tour. "'Wish That You Were Here' is a song about the idea that love is a journey and a risk," she explained. "Having been on tour, I've lived in a sort of magical time bubble, where the days almost blend together. It's amazing, but it comes at a cost - a cost of leaving the people you love behind for a year or two. You kind of feel like if you could sing a song into the wind, maybe the wind could take it to them in a way that you can't with a text or a call. You just want to send your love in a different way, in a way to somehow reach the unreachable."
When director Tim Burton and his team approached Welch and asked if she could contribute a song to the soundtrack of his Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children movie, she felt this track was the perfect choice. Welch worked closely with the director to record the song in a way that evoked the film's spirit and it ended up playing during the film's end credits. She said:
"I've always been a huge fan of Tim Burton's. We have a very similar sensibility. It's the kind of dark, dark romance of his work - so beautiful and whimsical, but with an element of darkness to it. That's something that I always try and achieve in my work, too.
I knew we would get along really well working together and we did. I feel like we're coming from a similar place of quite frantic imaginations trying to get the words out before the pictures in our heads disappear. He feels like a kindred spirit."
Florence Welch's first contact with Tim Burton was in around 2010. "I was in Australia on tour there for the first time and visited an exhibition of all his work," she said. "I wanted to leave him a message and all I had on me was an x-ray of my hand, as I had just broken my finger. So I wrote on the x-ray and gave it to the gallery to pass on and never knew if he got it. When we met for the first time, he told me it's been hanging up in his office ever since."