A collier village of Nithsdale in Dumfries and Galloway, Kirkconnel lies on the River Nith, 30 miles (48 km) northwest of Dumfries. The village developed close to the site of the ancient church of St. Connel in association with the manufacture of textiles and coal mining. The Fauldhead pit was sunk in 1896 and by the 1950s there were seven mines in the area, but the last deep mine - the Rodger - closed in 1980, although open-cast mining remains an important contribution to the local economy. The parish church dates from 1728 and nearby is a Miners' Memorial by Tom Sandilands erected in 1984.
Kirkconnel benefits from a library and a railway station, but no longer has a school. The former primary school is now an Activity and Resource Centre, while the junior secondary school was demolished in 1971 and is now a park. Pupils attend the primary school in neighbouring Kelloholm followed by Sanquhar Academy. The village has an active heritage society, established in 1997, with offices on Main Street.