Looking back, it is hard not to think of the final surrender as inevitable. It did not seem so at the time. Once the troops had withdrawn from the mainland, there was real determination to hold the Island. 'My impression at this time,' wrote Colonel Ashmore, 'was that everyone was full of determination to hold the Island. There was no lack of morale on the 1st February when the Causeway was blown and the Island settled down to a siege.' Even ten days later, the mood still held: 'Until the n t h February I am sure there was no idea that the Fortress would not hold out. It was unpleasant, the shelling and the bombing had increased a great deal but everyone felt we were giving as good as we got in so far as shelling was concerned.'65