For immigration purposes, the term ‘public funds’ applies to:
Other benefits and public services provided by the government or local councils are not classed as ‘public funds’ for immigration purposes, and therefore can be accessed by a person who has no recourse to public funds. However, to qualify for some services, the person may need to meet immigration-related requirements, or be in receipt of certain benefits. The immigration-related requirements of commonly accessed public services are set out in our rights and entitlements information.
See also the Home Office public funds guidance for caseworkers.