Laden with trig poles, theodolites - and porridge - Len Beadell and his team built roads, laid out town sites and undertook an enormous survey programme in order to prepare a test launching area in one of the most isolated parts of the world.
The problems ranged from taking astro-fixes in a cloudy sky and becoming surrounded by a sea of red mud, to patching a bald spot on a pet joey.
All were solved by using those two most necessary ingredients of life in the bush - ingenuity and imagination. Len's descriptions of the countryside, the adventures the team experienced, and the Australian bush characters they encountered are by turns illuminating and hilarious.
His high-spirited account of the work that had to be done "before they called it Woomera" makes vivid and entertaining reading.