Exposures of the general public to radio waves at locations near 20 randomly selected GSM microcell and picocell base stations in the UK have been assessed in the context of the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP) guidelines. Compliance distances were calculated for the antennas of the base stations from their reported radiated powers. Under pessimistic assumptions that would maximise exposures, the minimum height at which the general public reference level could potentially be exceeded near any of the base station antennas was calculated to be 2.4 m above ground level. The power densities of the broadcast carriers transmitted by the base stations have been measured and scaled to include all other possible carriers. Exposures were generally in the range 0.002-2% of the ICNIRP general public reference level, and the greatest exposure quotient near any of the base stations was 8.6%. Exposures close to microcell base stations were found to be generally greater than those close to macrocell base stations.